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Elias T Hoth – Let Sleepin Demons Lie

Nice to get a finished copy of this to review as I was fortunate enough to hear this from the demo stage. So how does the album sound?

  1. Mississippi Burning. Martin Luther King's “I Have A Dream” speech leads into a Cult meets Southern Rock riff. Solid opener.
  2. Mobile Alabama. Atmospheric guitar this time which has been put through a pedal board, sounding somewhere between wah wah and slide. Most reminded me of Chris Rea. Contains a good lengthy guitar solo.
  3. Roll Down Dirty. Slightly different feel to this one again. Old school rhythm and blues meets Southern Boogie is about as close as I can get, with classic line-up Whitesnake being the most prevalent influence.
  4. A Little Bit A Sinnin'. This was my favourite track when I heard the demo. Regrettably this sounds too much like the preceding track, albeit with a more laid back verse. Great lyrics.
  5. Sleazy Hussy Fever. Much slower track with a blues/12 bar sound. Harmonica and Hammond organ are nice touches although this one is way too long to my ears.
  6. Ozark Alabama Please. Mid-paced and probably the weakest track so far. Clone of Mobile Alabama with few distinguishing features.
  7. .Louisiana Train. Another mid-paced track, again heard it all before. Guitar and keyboards at start work well though.
  8. Down Mississippi Way. More aggressive guitar sound (see summary!) in a 12 bar boogie track – think Status Quo with Southern slant. Stunning guitar solo.
  9. Wanted By The F.B.I. Very familiar sounding again, rescued by another dynamic solo.
  10. Hex On You. Bizarrely the main riff reminded me of Wheels Of Steel by Saxon! Quality solo again.
  11. Rollin' Thunder. Faster tempo, otherwise familiar territory. Strange choice to close the album.

Hats off to all involved in the production for starters – great sound throughout. This is a million miles away from my usual listening yet it's still very enjoyable. Especially from track eight onwards with the introduction of a young guitarist by the name of Sam Barnett. Hard to believe he's only seventeen! He unleashes some truly spectacular solos and surely has a great career ahead of him. The album in general contains songs with great hooks and accessible choruses. Combine that with clean vocals and lengthy solos and it should be a hit. My only reservations concern the running order and the length of the tracks. There are a couple of occasions where very similar tunes go back to back, and several of them would have been re-worked much shorter if I'd been involved. That said I admire Elias's work (he's responsible for all music, lyrics and arrangements) and think this album should appeal to a good cross-section of the CD-buying public.

 

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