CD Review: Dove & Boweevil Band ~ This Life

unnamed (1)Dove & Boweevil Band
This Life
Indepedent

The release of their much-anticipated second album has created a buzz around this album in the U.K. as it is number 2 in the Independent Blues Broadcasters Broadcasters (IBBA) charts this week. Having listened to the album I can understand why. The music has a zest for life the lyrics shine and the singing is full of tonal shapes and depths. Dove and Boweevil have caused a stir before, their music was hushed due tp guitarist Mark Howes suffering complications after a routine throat operation that meant for him it was hospital wards not stages and studios. Now they are back kicking up a storm with the combination of Mark’s guitar playing that adds a layer and a stability allowing Lauren Dove to have complete vocal freedom from the hush of a whispered confidence to the squeal and a holler that could be heard across many a cotton field, and would wake up the cotton weevil. Dove & Boweevil’s music on This Life is inspired by blending a mix of styles and emotions that blend just like life. It is a mix of knowledge, experience and passion as they weave together a sound that knots together the ties of Blues, Soul and Southern Rock with a twist of country. The sound is infectious modern and British despite the influences, the music flows and drives the lyrics sung with passion yet having a naivety and innocence in the vocals delivered by Lauren. This is a young sound a band that is maturing and shaping their sound the songwriting is strong and the instrumentation has a foot tapping joyous feel that musical destiny is in their own hands. Mark’s guitar licks, riffs and little hooks are beguiling and give a shape and density to the music the rhythm section a duo of Pauls, drummer Weston and bassist Williams, provide a beat that gives the whole album structure and texture and timing that gives a true punctuation to Lauren’s vocals; with Andy ‘Mojo’ Robinson providing a layer of chords and interest with some sublime keyboard skills. Opening at a lick with Food for Love you fall into the music that is upbeat and full of Americana feel and energy. The beat slows with Flying with Angels and you see a gentler tone to the vocals, the stand-out on the track is the immense guitar riffs from Mark delivered with emotional control so that nothing overpowers the words that have a darker other worldly feel. The title track has a slower, languid tempo where the vocals purr over the melody and you are captivated with the album that shows this is a band that thinks about their music and understands that tempo can relate to the audience the meaning of the lyrics. Every track has something to offer the use of horns on some tracks has been done with sensitivity and the lighter mood of East Coast Blues with plenty of keyboard mojo counteracting that on Fireworks it was the guitar that had the centre stage. Back to a darker gothic, southern rock Lady Lavoo is full of swampy beats and the sound has a mystical dark sound that gives the second half of the album real interest. Then we have the finger clicking Get Your Red Lips On and we are off to party with a lady with attitude and knows how to sashay onto any stage. Penultimate track Dry Land demonstrates the glories of Laurens’ raunchy vocals and this is a track that remains in your ear for a long time and then the album closes with Maple Leaf, with a controlled quietness that demands to be listened to, it is almost a call to prayer in a number that has an acoustic feel. This is a stylish album that should ensure that Dove & Boweevil are heard and enjoyed far and wide.

Bluesdoodles gives this CD EIGHT pawprint half inchdoodle paws out of TEN ….

Track Listing

 

1. Food for Love
2. Outta Town
3. Flying With Angels
4. This Life
5. Need A Little Love
6. Firework
7. East Coast Blues
8. Lady Lavoo
9. Hand In My Pocket
10. Put Your Red Lips On
11. Dry Land
12. Maple Leaf