This is this award-winning duo’s fourth album and once again they have encapsulated what makes this pair stand out from the crowd by playing clever music you want to listen too. They are fantastic as a live band full of warmth and stories that make each track authentic with personal connection by The Red Dirt Skinners and the crowds. Firstly, if you have not heard them before, disengage genre border controls, and the need to stereotype music into a box, open your ears, listen and appreciate the pure talent streaming from the speakers.
This is a live album that has managed to trap onto the static metal of a CD the atmosphere and quirkiness of a live performance as they deliver a one-take do studio tweaking so you get the performance as it was heard as they say “warts and all” Every track is part of a set that showcases the highlights of the previous albums and the starts are… Rob with his vocals, singing and continuity between tracks plus his acoustic guitar that is the backbone of the sound line Oh! And lets not forget keep Rob’s feet busy with a drum and Sarah with combination of her Soprano Sax which adds clarity and drenches tracks with pure emotion and her vocals and the harp. This is a duo that has meshed genres and creates a sound that is full with layers of textures and clear nothing dominates but adds something to the music they create.
The hardest task in writing this review is selecting a few tracks to highlight as they are all special in their own way. The opening track Cornbread, Peas and Black Molasses is full of swing and vitality this is blues that steps out-side of the 12-bar box. The unexpected track for those who have had the misfortune of not seeing this entertaining often numerous duo live is David Bowie’s, Space Oddity, starting quietly with a haunting empty space wind blowing Sarah on Sax they build with the guitar and the vocals as they harmonise in this stripped back and emotive version that you will not forget but play again, this is a special track. For me I love their version of Brown Ferry’s Blues and their own song Black and White which is so personal to their own life experiences and the humour in The Monkey In The Engineer every blues album has to have a song about a train.
This is an album you will put on when you want to hear quality live music and sip a drink of your choice it doesn’t have to be Port as Rob sings in Up All Night – Live music at its best in your home.
Cornbread Peas & Black Molasses
Up All Night
Girl In A Truck
Shreveport to New Orleans
The Monkey and The Engineer
Got My Mojo Working
Lay Me Down
Black And White
Other Side Of Town
Browns Ferry Blues