JAMES WILSON @ INDIE BAND GURU
'Mother's On A Date Tonight'
Blake Anthony Robson has had a busy few years including releasing his debut solo album Monster’s Sleeping. To help promote this release he put together a new band to create a bigger sound. He recruited the skills of Sebastian Carlsson (lead guitar), Charlie Cockburn (bass & keys), and Drew Manley (drums & percussion).
Earlier in the year, this group of musicians locked themselves away at Arch Studios. Their hard work saw the creation of their new album Mother’s On A Date Tonight.
The first single released from the album and which also starts off this collection of songs is “Sunny Disposition.” Its bluesy vibe is a perfect introduction to what this band has to offer. Robson’s vocals are on top form to ensure he gets the listeners’ attention.
As the album continues, it’s hard not to notice the various sounds woven into this release. It blends a mix of rock, blues, and Americana with a little bit of Country. A great example of this combination is the track “Your Words Won’t Save My Life.” The use of distorted guitars that weave through this mesh of genres is a delight to hear.
As much as the band starts out with what they create with their instruments, credit has to go to their lyrical side. They give the words time to breathe so their stories can be told. They cover various topics including being young and in love. “Don’t you Remember” is a good example of this with lines such as, “Do you remember when we were younger / Every Friday night, I’d take you out to dance / To be social, we’d drop in the local”.
Many instant favourites can be found throughout Mother’s On A Date Tonight. But there are a few hidden gems that go under the radar. One of these is a particular favourite, “So Much Fate.” Its subtle groove gets you tapping your foot while Robson shares his tale. Its bluesy undertone is supported by great harmonies and superb work on the harmonica. It is one of those tracks that grows stronger with each listen.
There are a lot of albums which get weaker towards the end. This release is not one. It finishes with the superb track “Made of Gold.” The delicate use of the piano and vocals in the intro subtly grabs your attention. The strings come in to create a captivating atmosphere. His vocals do not last long as they take a step back to let the intertwining music sweep you away.
Mother’s On A Date Tonight is an album assembled by a group who have a love for the craft. With a great blend of styles and sound, there will be something here for everyone.
A & R FACTORY -
If you are one of those people who needs everything in neat generic packages I guess you would drop Blake Anthony Robson into the alt-rock pigeon-hole…or the pop-rock one…or perhaps alt-country…roots? It just shows you the limitations of genres, especially when it comes to acts like this, ones who neatly genre-splice classic sounds into new, original music. So forget that.
Sunny Disposition wanders the same musical pathways as the likes of The Black Crowes did, that country infused, blues grooving, retro-referencing rock re-imagined for a more contemporary generation. It moves from an alt-countrified and considered place to a full on blues rock work out gradually laying on the musical textures and building to something that ticks both old school rock boxes, those of discerning blues fans and opens up a much travelled sound to a whole new audience.
JAMES WILSON @ INDIE BAND GURU
2017 saw the release of Blake Anthony Robson’s stunning solo album The Monster’s Sleeping. It showcased a musician who blended blues and Americana with a dark undertone. “Crates and Lead” highlights the talent that he possesses, in which you can hear his influences Johnny Cash and Jack White.
While on the road to promote his release, he brought together a band to add a fuller sound. This new dynamic led to a fresh collection of songs, including the latest “Sunny Disposition”. It also saw them deliver an edgier Americana vibe. This slight change in direction also brought an added depth to the music with some great work on the guitars and drums.
It is difficult to drag the spotlight away from Robson when he performs. He has a Jack White-like presence with his tone, a huge compliment. The chorus “Darlin’ your trust is misplaced / and all I want / Is to die with a / die with a / die with a / smile on my face” highlights that bluesy swagger at work. It is that special quality that makes this song a must to check out.
If “Sunny Disposition” has left you hungry for more, don’t worry. Robson’s follow up album Mother’s On A Date Tonight will be released later in the year. From this track alone, it is difficult not to have high expectations with music this good.