Broken Machine Definitely NOT Ash Wilson in Conversation

Broken Machine Definitely NOT Ash Wilson in Conversation

 

Broken Machine Definitely NOT
Ash Wilson in Conversation

 

 

I was delighted when I was sent your debut album Broken Machine to review.  It is certainly an album full of blues strong guitar that makes compelling listening.

BD: What were your first musical influences growing up in Lincolnshire?
AW:
I played the guitar, but didn’t like guitar music, early on it was acoustic chords but had no interest despite being exposed to guitar music by my parents. It wasn’t until I heard a Kenny Wayne Shepherd tune on the radio, that I thought ‘I really like the sound of that’. Then I discovered Stevie Ray Vaughan, through him Jimi Hendrix and through him Howlin’ Wolf and further back through this one bit of exposure.  I met a guy when I was at Music College who had a friend who was into blues music. Other than Eric Clapton, who everyone knows I didn’t know many exponents of Blues.  If you like Blues you need to meet Trev he was my education in the blues and electric guitar.

Then I had a band with him for a few years called The Melts. He played harmonica and sang while I played guitar. It was my blues pilgrimage early on that is what got me into the music as such was pretty much Trevor to be fair. The kind of music Mum & Dad listened to was more Progressive Rock the likes of Genesis and Pink Floyd.  So not much blues guitar, though Dave Gilmour is a massive hero of mine and is a super blues player, I didn’t identify him as a blues guitarist until much later on. I come from a musical household, where everyone is well into music but blues was something I brought in after meeting different people. Then Dad came out of his shell and that he really liked Rory Gallagher it was a strange development really after not having any blues in the house. Dad brought all this old blues to the table that I hadn’t heard before on records saying you should listen to this and listen to that. I can remember saying to my Dad why didn’t you play this stuff years ago. He said, didn’t think you would be interested and to be fair I wasn’t. I played piano when younger I didn’t really have great yearning to play that instrument again. Until my cousin came over with an old acoustic and showed me a few chords I thought really cool and liked it.  I didn’t know where to look other than the likes of Gilmour and when you first start to play you have no idea how to deconstruct what was going on as couldn’t play the guitar. I asked for guitar lessons for my fourteenth birthday and then met a guy who had a band and Dad’s old records got really interested in sixties blues boom in the UK and further back. As I have got older I have gone further back, I hate to admit didn’t get into Hendrix for ages didn’t like the sound of the recordings I was so used to produced music. I didn’t like the fizzy guitar sound of Hendrix I couldn’t get my head around it then I got it. As I started to hear the depth of vinyl and the monstrous fuzz tones that we all try to get. Started to go further back and appreciate Leadbelly and Robert Johnson then came back through Muddy Waters. It was a cock-eyed way of finding music I didn’t go back in chronological order I was bouncing all over the place.

BD: Broken Machine is your debut album how did you decide on using Superfly Studios, your brother to produce the album and then Hoax guitarist Jesse Davey to guest and master the album?

Broken Machine Definitely NOT Ash Wilson in ConversationAW: Superfly, well I have been friends with Wayne Proctor for coming up to fifteen years now and worked together on Indie projects I was involved in. So after my first blues band parted company, I put together a Blues trio together with my brother Phil and Laurence Jones’ current bassist Greg Smith and we went out did local shows. Wayne came to a show and said should come to the studio after hearing track Throwing Knives which wasn’t bluesy at all. It was then called Bluewater and Wayne had just started producing and did an EP with him where Wayne played drums and Steve Amadeo  (Ainsley Lister’s bassist – and playing with Ian Parker at the time).  Alt Rock band Djune with no guitar solos the music was all about the song. We played for couple of years opened for Ocean Colour Scene despite that we never really got past the first rung, that said we were a good live band. It was in a way a vanity project with my brother Phil, alt rock inspired by Feeder, Queens of the Stone Age, etc. Recorded an album at home on a limited budget but no deadlines spent a year and learnt a lot. Then the opportunity to join Sean Webster. Not performed on the stage for a long time and not played lead very much had been locked into rhythm guitar. Sean plays a lot on the continent especially Netherlands. Played with him for about a year then got itchy feet, yes lots of work but all very specific whereas I like to do different types. So setup side project the idea was to record in the style of Jimmy Vaughan, a traditional blues album. Three guys in a room, with the whole album sounding similar to Peace & Love I was paranoid that the album would never get done, the obvious choice was Roger so rang him and he said yes so the eighth wonder of the world was on board. Only booked the studio for a week to lay down album of straight blues. I had known Andy at Superfly so obvious choice for engineer the studio close to where I live, love the music they have produced. I believed that it would be a speedy process seven days last the music job a good ‘un.

Jesse got involved as I had sung on his solo album, Big Blues. He has not got the public image that he deserves, I am a big fan of Jon Amor who is a superb guitarist, singer and writer who hasn’t got the wide public image he deserves. Met him through Barry Middleton at The Running Horse, same time as I met Wayne. The Hoax was before my time missed them in their heyday.  Jesse’s guitar is powerful and exciting, on Big Blues, by the first solo I was enraptured by it when Phil played it to me what a concept a record for a film. A Soundtrack but no movie. Jesse’s own guitar pedals sound just incredible and I was interested in his gear and wanted to buy a pedal. Listened to Infamous Vampire that JD has mastered and he asked if I would like to sing on the record. It was an amazing experience as we started by co-writing over Skype in one night we had Revelator. The lyrics are quite misogynistic but fun to listen too. It reflects on the fifties and sixties winking of an eye and Revelator is a party rather than the book of revelations! A bonus that Jesse didn’t hate it.

So with Broken Machine thought be cool to get Jesse to play on The Hitcher idea for the music came out of a jam. Late night drive, reminded me of a past experience. I though get Jesse on this song with a high ghostly vocal circa Glenn Miller and I’ll sing falsetto, visualising she was driving with the ghost of me. Told everyone else and the second guitar adds extra to the existing to a hypnotic level no difficult chords the other person is the emotional crux as I sing I was the last to know.

With Phil on Drums and the experience of producing the Djune album in our bedroom Phil as the producer was a perfect fit. As the album developed it became less a Jimmy Vaughan inspired collection. The songs took shape and the variations in sound reflected the purpose and meanings of the lyrics. We worked together Roger had his input he was clear when a song didn’t work and sent me away to build on the lyrics. Broken Machine was shaped by my experience and the interaction of Phil and Roger.

BD: Does the Title of the album Broken Machine have any particular significance?

AW:  The song Broken Machine came first, not a deliberate album title. Broken Machine is about relationships that do not work. The whole album is my life up to getting married. It is Ash from 15-30 nothing in the album covers the now it is set in the past. That said the track seemed the perfect words of the album title as it reflected the past.

BD: The album is in your name with the musicians chosen featured. Will this be the band you use when you tour? I am assuming here that you are going to be touring the album so we can hear the music live.

AW: Tour Plans… well, we are supporting South African guitarist Dan Patlansky when he tours in May. Really excited to be on the same bill and getting my music known across the U.K. we have other festivals and dates in the pipeline, it is all happening fast and once confirmed, there are some exciting Autumn dates in the pipeline I will be the first to be shouting about them through social media.

The band will definitely be Roger on bass and we are looking for a permanent drummer watch the space for the announcement. With the increasing number of gigs it would be impossible for Phil to continue in drumming role due to his commitment with Laurence Jones.  So answer is yes, lots of opportunities to hear Ash Wilson play Broken Machine and more live.

BD: I have always been interested in the lyrics of a song. The lyrics are very strong including Domestic Violence on Words Of A Woman. Do the lyrics always come first or sometimes a guitar lick or riff inspire you?

AW: This was written after the birth of my first child I was feeling emotional and vulnerable. I overheard a conversation and put myself in a wife’s place when husband has an affair, the emotional abuse when it is found out. The song is emotionally charged as the poor women thinks today is going to be the same as any other day and in a couple hours later her entire world is turned upside down.  Exploring how, why the lyrics are emotional and found them difficult to sing live.

BD: Where do you get your inspiration for your songwriting?

Broken Machine Definitely NOT Ash Wilson in ConversationAW: Normally my own experiences, the exception to date is Words Of A Woman. In fact, Roger loved that line hated the rest of the lyrics he felt were not so great, went away thought about it and remembered an event I had overheard a complete stranger. Talked to Roger as not sure about writing about someone else’s emotions, he said do it so wrote down a song that really works. Lots first on this album never written ballad before took a year to write. Could have gone to Sean but thought do it myself blaming my voice ability to level a room without doing anything but his voice. Played three years worked every time with Sean.

Moments that you had are gone we change, write and visually I try to make the words paint a picture then it is easy to write.  Often it is a phrase or even nonsense at the start and write over and around and the flow of the song builds. The story unfolds. Or it can start with a guitar solo and that inspires.

Emotional involvement is a must especially important for a ballad like Holding Hands

Next album more confidence singing about other people as well as myself. I am quite conscious of people watching anything that affects not sure about going political frustration what is on TV politic

BD: If you were putting together the perfect band with members from across the years (dead or alive) who would you have playing
AW:

Drums: Steve Gadd
Bass: Pino Palladino
Guitar: Jimmy Vaughan, Doyle Bramhall II (could have 10!)
Rhythm Guitar: Keith Richards
Keys: Stevie Wonder
Vocals: Etta James/Muddy Waters

These playing on the same stage would be really hard but interesting music would happen that I am positive.

Check out Bluesdoodles Review of Broken Machine HERE

Check out Ash Wilson’s Website HERE

http://www.ashwilsonmusic.com/shows

Debut Album Broken Machine from Ash Wilson

Debut Album Broken Machine from Ash Wilson

Debut Album Broken Machine
from Ash Wilson

 

Prodigiously talented in the studio guitar and vocals melded into a harmonious medley that leads you down deep into the lyrics. (Having seen Ash play live at Skegness this skill is transferred to the stage, his live performance is spellbinding.)

The album is a British blues brotherhood, joining Ash Wilson on Drums and production is his brother Phil Wilson on Drums; taking time out from Laurence Jones drumming duties. Completing the Rhythm section is iconic and instantly recognisable is Roger Inniss. On loan from King King, Bob Fridzema adds the colour and meaty textures of the Hammond and keys. Into the mix for good measure Hoaxes guitarist pops up to engineer the album and join in the fun on The Hitcher. Now we are all introduced sit back and enjoy an explosion of contemporary blues energy combined with the legacy of the sixties and beyond. The music is encapsulated not so much in a Broken Machine but a swirling vortex or a time machine garnering blues tones from across the decades.

Opening with Show Me How To Love You, with this playing skill Ash audiences cheers and whoops of delights will tell you loud and clear. With a fuzzy, chugging opening chords we are drawn through the river mists to the banks of the modern electric Mississippi blues with echoes of the Hoax in the delivery of the vocals from Ash. Followed by an aptly titled number, World’s Gone Crazy, with a swirl of Jagger as he delves into the political backdrop of 2016. The single from the album is the Hammond Drenched rumbling Peace and Love that would fit into a Hoax album neatly with the guitar reminiscent of Jon Amor with a swagger. Now for the title track, what is this Broken Machine? Definitely not the band they are on fire. The cadence of Ash’s vocal changes with standout riff’s that rocks the boat. This is a track that sets down the burning ambition and strength of Ash Wilson and his band.  The Hitcher crammed with the sound that makes British interpretation of the Blues such a delightful listening experience. From the first note, Ash Wilson’s guitar joined by Jesse Davey is taking us on a road trip we all want to be part on. This is a quieter more laid back number with the distinctive guitar solo’s this takes back to the sound of crooners and hints of the big band fullness of sound.  Like all the music on the album, the songs have a story personal with ghostly memories of hurts, frustrations and joys from the past.

Closing the album with Holding Hands, a sweetest duet between guitar and Hammond. Bob And Ash working in harmony as the heartfelt ballad unfolds. The ballad of damage that never goes away how you are left a broken machine by past experience. There is no doubt the Ash Wilson has a vast amount of skills in the tank of playing the blues and potential to grow.

As a debut album Broken Machine stands out from the crowd. Why? Ash Wilson’s vocals, powerful, gentle, crooning and always as clear as a bell. You expect guitar playing to electrify, percussion on the beat but the vocals make or break many an album. Broken Machine is made by vocals that will always connect and are the extra instrument that blues must have lead breaks however fast and furious do not cut the mustard. Vocals and Lyrics are the winning combination.  Added to this is the production which is crisp and the focused intent to take you on a musical journey of blues, contemporary and reflecting styles and textures through the Ash Wilson guitar. Another gem from Superfly Studios.

Ash WilsonBroken Machine – Wilson Brothers Music Via Cadiz Records

NINE pawprint half inchdoodle paws out of TEN ….

Track Listing

  1. Show Me How To Love You
  2. World’s Gone Crazy
  3. Peace and Love
  4. Broken Machine
  5. Words Of A Woman
  6. Out Of Time
  7. The Hitcher
  8. Hold On Now
  9. Lonely Room
  10. Holding Hands

On Tour with Dan Patlansky

Cadiz Records

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017The eagerly awaited debut album from UK Singer-Songwriter and Guitar Player Ash Wilson, Broken Machine. One listen to the single Peace and Love you are pulled deep into the machine. The band surrounding Ash Wilson add lay down great grooves. They are  Drummer and brother Phil Wilson, award-winning Bassist Roger Inniss, award-winning and talented dutchman, Bob Fridzema and special guest guitarist the mighty Jesse Davey.

The album is maybe best described by multi award-winning UK Blues Hall Of Fame inductee Wayne Proctor, (King King, Ben Poole, Stevie Nimmo), as “A fine record that grooves, rocks, twists and turns. You’re all gonna love it! Now grab a cuppa, press play and turn it up! LOUD!!”

 

Released Friday 21st April 2017
Available on CD and Digital Download
Pre-order the CD from Amazon UK or the
Digital Download from iTunes

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017Wilson Brothers Music in association with Cadiz Music Distribution are pleased to announce the release of singer-songwriter and guitarist Ash Wilson’s debut album ‘Broken Machine’ on Friday 21st April 2017.

Lincolnshire’s Ash Wilson is one of England’s most distinctive vocalists, guitarists and songwriters in contemporary blues music today. The debut album entitled ‘Broken Machine’is a watershed achievement for Wilson, both in terms of the many musical styles in the tracks, which begin and end with the blues at its core.

With the explorations and growth of him as a singer, songwriter and guitarist the album has resulted in spiritual growth expressed through the medium of his music.

‘Broken Machine’ sees Ash working together with his brother Phil Wilson who whilst drumming on the entire album also produces, mixes and co-writes the material on the debut album.

‘Broken Machine’ features the outstanding talents of bassist Roger Inniss (Chaka Khan, Laurence Jones), keyboardist Bob Fridzema (King King, Dana Fuchs), plus very special guest guitarist Jesse Davey (The Hoax) who plays on the ‘The Hitcher’.

Recorded at Superfly Studios, Ollerton, UK
Engineer: Andrew Banfield
Mixed By Phil Wilson
Mastered by Jesse Davey

 

Broken Machine Never with Ash Wilson Find of 2017

Debut Album, Undone from The Black Circles

Debut Album, Undone from the Black Circles

 Debut Album, Undone from The Black Circles

 

The Black Circles have been kicking up a dust cloud of plaudits from within the blues scene so Bluesdoodles was interested to hear and reflect on the blues they are creating out of Warrington. The opening guitar of Sam Bratley shows promise, One Big Lie has a sound is looking back and then the vocals come in not adding a layer of energy but sounding rather flat and uninteresting; not the best beginning.  The guitar of She’s Dynamite has a sting in its tail and the vocals pick up the energy She’s Dynamite will get dancers and lovers of urban 1950’s blues very happy. With a drum intro we have a change of tempo and a grungier sound that shows this is a band with true potential but again I’m Leaving has a dampened feel and the lyrics feel tired and predictable. This track does have a rockier feel and has more energy and I was pleasantly surprised by Drifting, acoustic driven country blues. This change in texture and tempo shows the depth of musical scope and knowledge of this young band on their debut album. Then back to a traditional blues sound the guitar playing by Sam is very good, and the Hammond from Jesse Davey adds another layer of tone. The rhythm section once again is solid thanks to Martin Saunders on bass and drummer Phil Wilson. Closing with Left Behind, the tempo rises but I am left feeling let down rather than Left Behind with closing notes wanting more.

When I listen to a debut album I assume three things, (sometimes wrongly!). Firstly, the band/artists involved are all good musicians including vocal prowess, then there is enough material for an album and lastly time and care has been taken to create a well-produced album.

The Black Circles guitar work is blues personified, for the majority of the album, Undone is stinging urban blues that hits the right timbre of tone.  With a solid rhythm section and the addition of Hammond 3 on some tracks the sound is robust. For me two things let me down with the vocals these were just off the mark often drowned in the deluge of guitar and slurred and have a moaning drone. The Black Circles debut Album Undone, misses the mark for me underdone with blues of a previous period recreated but not twirled into a modern form. Debut albums are always hard and the test for The Black Circles will be changing drummers from Phil Wilson to Mark Barrett who brings with him the esteemed pedigree of being part of The Hoax.  With more gigs under their belt a refining of a sound that I hear glimmers of in some of the tracks The Black Circles could develop into a must see band. For me this is work in progress. The saving grace is that the album sees The Black Circles experimenting with varying styles of blues harkening back to Albert Collins & Freddie King; harder edge rocky blues and acoustic country blues. They will by their second album have developed a recognisable sound, distinctive feel that will be The Black Circles hook.

 

The Black Circles – Undone – Independent Released April 15 2016

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

 

Track Listing

  1. One Big Lie
  2. She’s Dynamite
  3. Don’t Mean A Thing
  4. Stop Acting This Way
  5. I’m Leaving
  6. Hard times
  7. Gypsy Girl
  8. Drifting
  9. Bad Luck
  10. Left Behind

Richard Townend/Mighty Bosscats ~ 7 Deadly Sins – CD Review

images (4)Richard Townend/Mighty Bosscats
7 Deadly Sins
Independent

Seven Deadly Sins, The Mighty Bosscats latest album is definitely not a sin to listen to unless pleasure is one and according to the list we are safe to sit back listen and enjoy. There are seven tracks, one for each of the seven deadly sins; gluttony, lust, wrath, pride, sloth, greed and envy and the incorporation of the bible is common in the blues but combined with Dante and giving a modern twist is a huge undertaking. This is an album of meaningful lyrics and melodic phrasing that will not be boxed into a category, it is a sound of its own that uses the tonal quality of the instrumental to reflect the subject, getting seven different musical variations across so much celebration of self.

Richard Townend’s vocals, full of gruff tones and menacing delights make the album work when added to the mix of the talent Bosscats truly talented musicians working with him on this project. Normally I would pick a few tracks but each of the tracks make the whole so have reviewed them all as this is a storybook of an album.

The opening track represents lust15 Minute Blues, a melodic jazz rhythm fuelled number that fills the room with a sound that is so sweet you just want to hear some more than over the top the gravelly voice of Richard and you lust for more as the track is not 15 minutes long!

Sweet Wine representing gluttony is a full sound from the hills of Mississippi with a swampy drifting as we become sated by the feast of life and the chaotic outcomes this causes.

Well this track title gave it all away Angry Words, just had to be wrath and this is musical poetry and this is not anger between lovers but children towards parents – an unusual basis for a song. There is no anger in either the lyrics or the music it is actually a rather peaceful, laid-back relaxed track, the ironic take on Wrath!

We have a blues song with searing blues guitar opening the track combined with fabulous drumming with brushes I would take pride</em> in keeping the beat like that in Tired Old Blues; as we explore stubbornness and how it is destructive because we are too proud to take a different road.

Only a single word for sloth it is the song Lazy, with saxophone setting the tempo and the laid back singing style this is sitting easy on the summer’s day on the porch, it Is about the sloth caused by management speak it is how you disincentivise the workers in the modern world accompanied by a crisp modern sound.

The Diamonds is blues with a country feel with searing harp and slide guitars and epitomise greed, with the blood attached to many diamonds through war, this is a protest song that makes you reconsider the need for the diamonds in our lives a thoughtful track amongst an album where the text or lyrics are the key.

Lastly, but definitely not the least of the sins Envy, with a sultry Latin American salsa rhythm beat that shows the massive destruction that envy can cause with the Indiana State Prison Blues, as we want to possess what someone else owns.

The album is seven tracks of blues inspired lyrical poems. It is an album you have to listen to and take notice; but saying that the music is full of tones and textures of all the emotions we experience there is nothing grim about the music as Richard ensures we get an insight into the dangers of the 7 Deadly Sins. This is an album dripping in the blues and modern culture a musical journey is undertaken and the outcome is some thoughtful and pleasing tracks that stay away from being over-indulgent and that would be a sin!

Bluesdoodles gives this CD SEVEN doodle paws out of TEN ….pawprint half inch

Artists
Richard Townend voice & guitar
Glen Buck drums
Phil Wilson bass
Greg Camburn sax
Allan Kelly pedal steel
Will Potten brass
Phil Pawsey keys and harp
Kev Wiltshire keys

CD Review – Go Forth and Multiply – Well Hung Heart

Well Hung HeartWHH - Cover-1
Go Forth and Multiply
Out May 5th sn GROWvision Records

Having seen Well Hung Heart, live at The Globe in Cardiff as part of The Hoax current tour I was more than a tad excited to be listening to the album – I had high expectations as I loaded the album, thankfully I was not disappointed. The opening track was straight in at a ripping rocky pace the title is ‘Big Plans’ and the album certainly has big plans when it comes to musicality and style. There can be no argument Well Hung Heart are avant-garde, delivering a live sound with minimal over-dubbing, that melds and welds together a full plectrum of sounds that can be plucked and strummed out of a guitar.
WHH - Cover-3

This is a whirlwind of genres swirled together, punk, grunge, rock and underpinning deep in the undergrowth of sound is the blues, not as anyone would instantly recognise but there is no doubt Robin has incorporated blues guitar into this eclectic mix. This is a band that refuses to be encapsulated in aspic but runs free to deliver music they love and want you to enjoy the journey with them. It is at times unbelievable that this is a trio the sound they produce reminds me of stadia rock and at times early ZZ top. The band is Californian based with Greta Valenti with her powerful vocals that can change from raunchy, belting out rock and then deliver the gentlest softest lyric, she has a wonderful range full of tones and complexities; at times reminding me of Bjork and Siouxsie from the Banshees. Mix this with the skills and deft touch of Robin Davey (The Hoax) playing both bass and lead guitar you have a powerful mix of musical skills and understanding of how to deliver an interesting sound with perfect timing and control. Joining the party as drummer is Phil Wilson who adds that driving dimension of beat perfect timing and delightful backing vocals adding another layer of sound. Every one of the eleven tracks are gems in their own right the vocals on ‘Made For Leaving’ are full of yearning with artful use of soul in the voice that is accompanied by gentle but persistent drumming, the tempo fills out as Robin joins in with some delightful guitar work such a contrast and unexpected it is almost a ballad. The feeling of anger, rebellion and protestation is bubbling underneath many of the tracks but comes to boiling point in ‘Rehab is for Rich Kids’! If John Peel was alive surely this would be part of his current play-list, musically complete, different and above all true to the artistry of the musicians who are Well Hung Heart. This may not be the Blues! but Go Forth and Multiply is an album of today full of relevant undertones and is cracking music and is addictive always a measure of a cracking album.

Line Up
Greta Valenti – Vocals, Keys, Lyrics, and melodiesWHH - Cover-2
Robin Davey – Guitars, Bass, and Riffs
Phil Wilson – Drums, percussion, and backing vocals

Bluesdoodles gives this CD out of five doodle paws a doodle rating of
pawprint half inchpawprint half inchpawprint half inchpawprint half inchpawprint half inch

There is still time to catch them perform live and buy the CD

25th April The Cluny, Newcastle
26th April O2 ABC Glasgow