Stunning review by JD Nash of American Blues Scene

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Stunning review by JD Nash of American Blues Scene… Wow!

Starlite Campbell Band Serve up a Delicious ‘Blueberry Pie’

There’s a new group on the British blues horizon, but you’d never know it. The Starlite Campbell Band formed just one year ago, and dare we say, their debut release on the Supertone label, Blueberry Pie, will be taking the Isles, nay, the world, by storm.

Just as the Rolling Stones are making huge waves with their 30th studio release, Blue & Lonesome, along come a couple of seasoned musicians who bring back the sound of early UK blues, to near perfection. We use the term, couple, quite literally, as Suzy Starlite and Simon Campbell tied the proverbial knot in 2014. For Blueberry Pie, they added just the right touches by bringing in shuffle master drummer, Steve Gibson (Buzzcocks, Van Morrison, Jack Bruce); 2X British Blues Award winning keyboardist, Jonny Henderson; and Spanish harmonica doyen, Danny Boy Sánchez. With Campbell’s tight as a tick guitar, Starlite’s deep, funky bass and their combined natural vocals, this pie is delicious to the very last.

They cover all the bases on this one, beginning with what will surely be the hit track on the album, “Walkin’ Out the Door.” After the opening stick count, we were immediately transported to Memphis, circa 1962, with Henderson’s Hammond summoning the image of Booker T. Jones. But wait, what’s this? The wah-wah guitar, heavy ride and bottomless bass begin to conjure the ghosts of Cream. This is what the originators of UK blues took from their American mentors and fabricated into their own distinct genre. The Starlite Campbell Band nailed the sound, on an outstanding original track.

All eleven tracks on this offering are originals, written by Starlite and Campbell over the course of just a few months. The band’s hat-tip to deep Chicago blues comes out on, “Cry Over You,” and the final cut, “Thrill You,” nods to the string bending mastery of the late, great B. B. King. One can hear the influences of folk, rock, and blues all come across those vintage amps.

The couple were completely hands on with this album. Suzy and Simon not only wrote all the songs, but they also produced, engineered and recorded the entire release at their own, Supertone Records Studios in Estivella, Valencia, Spain. Starlite even took the cover photo, a sweet picture of her late grandmother, Betty, that she took in the late 70s.

From the haunting, “I Need a Light,” to the dance floor packing, “Your So Good For Me,” to the dulcet acoustic title track, Blueberry Pie, is just what the doctor ordered, diet be damned.

Artist: Starlite Campbell Band

Title: Blueberry Pie

Label: Supertone Records

Release Date: February 1st, 2017

Running Time: Approximately 47 minutes

Amazing Review by Andy Snipper of Music News

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Amazing review by Andy Snipper of Music News.

Starlite Campbell Band: Blueberry Pie

This is one fine piece of British Blues from the opening ‘Walkin’ Out The Door’ to the last with ‘Thrill You’.

I do love a Blues album that gets me wanting to boogie around the room and this one most definitely does.
You might call it retro-Blues as parts of it hark back to the Progressive Blues bands od the seventies and late sixties but it also encapsulates the excitement and the joy of many of the bands from that golden period.

Suzy Starlite plays a wicked bass and between her vocals and that of sidekick and husband Simon Campbell they cover all the bases. Campbell’s guitar is no mere add-on either as his playing on ‘Cry Over You’ proves. One feature about the music that I really dug was hearing Johnny Henderson’s marvellous Hammond and Wurlitzer – he was a regular with Matt Schofield and Ian Siegal and he fits in perfectly here. Steve Gibson’s (ex-Jack Bruce, Van Morrison, Maggie Bell) drums are on the spot and never threaten to overshadow things, just holding tight patterns while there is also a guest spot from Danny Boy Sanchez on harmonica.

They touch on a number of different styles including a delicious acoustic on the title track and howling Blues on ‘You’re So Good For Me’ and got me slavering for the next slice of this Blueberry Pie.
‘Guilty’ features Starlite’s vocals and she has no bad voice, no trying to overdo the vocals and underlined by a dense and heavy bass line. ‘Shimmy’ has a terrific skittering feel to it with Campbell’s guitar underlined by a fulsome Hammond swash.

It looks as though 2017 is already starting with a greater sense of musical joi de vivre than 2016 and this album definitely adds to that. A real slice of the right attitude and great playing.

4/5 stars

Listen to ‘Blueberry Pie’