Vancouver blues duo Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer are back with a fine new album “ A Real Fine Mess.”
They have spread their wings a little as they explore the sounds of the ’60s touching on ’60s pop to R and B music and take a few beautiful detours along the way.
I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time.
They are more their own band than your typical Black Keys style blues influenced duo.
The CD features plenty of fine harp playing from “Harpoonist” harp player /vocalist some time bassist Shawn Hall.
They wind down the CD with a kind of gospel influenced rave up featuring the unstoppable drums of “Axe Murderer” / guitarist/drummer keyboardist Matthew Rogers who sounds like he must have three or four extra hands considering all of the instruments he plays simultaneously.
The duo add a more ’70s funk/ R and B sound which comes to the fore on “Closer to Death” and the first track “ Back and Blue.”
Tom Heuckendorff also plays keyboards and organ on the CD. There are a lot of highlights on the CD.
“Do Whatcha” is a mid tempo groover that is most reminiscent of their previous work and has a catchy, sing along chorus.
Another hot one is the spooky “They Just Don't Make them Like They Used To.”
There are several tracks that have a ’60sish soulful vibe like the sexy “Feel Me Now.” They have also added a few other musicians on the CD including tenor saxophonists Chris Startup and Brock Miller and baritone sax player Chad Makela, who play on the background of this track.
“In and Out of Love” has a Bo Diddley old school blues boogie feel thanks to the harp and the groove. “In the End ” also has a vintage blues / ’60s sound.
“Mama's in the Backseat,” is a highlight as it is one of Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer’s beloved blues rock scorchers with a fantastic harp solo and the drums and guitar locked in with each other.
“ My Paradise” has a similarly toe tapping groove and background vocals which add to the ’60s sound of the CD.
The CD ends on a slower, groovy note with “A Real Fine Noise“ which features and interesting warbling harp solo which reminded me of Carlos Del Junco.
Band: Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer