Monday, April 13, 2015


by BlackBerry Smoke
(Rounder Records)

Atlanta based Blackberry Smoke continue to take their sound to new levels becoming the premiere southern rock band of America. If you're musical appetite craves the likes of bands like, The Black Crowes, Georgia Satellites, Lynryd Skynrd, Firefall Little Feet, Molly Hatchett, you are going to love what Blackberry Smoke bring to the table. On 'Holding All The Roses' the band dish out a 12-song set produced by Grammy-winner Brendan O'Brien, whose previous production projects have included AC/DC, Aerosmith, Pearl Jam, and Bruce Springsteen. The songs showcase the band's  emotion-charged mix of southern rock, gospel soul, and country, with Charlie Starr's raspy vocal delivery matched by his and Paul Jackson's solid guitars, Brandon Still's passion filled organ and piano, and the white on rice tight rhythm section of Richard and Brit Turner.  The southern country vibe isn’t as strong as in some other bands, so you have this slightly lesser element blended with good smooth southern rock. "Let Me Help You (Find The Door)" complete with it's country hoe down get things started right. The title track kicks the album up another gear before the southern fried mover, "Living In The Song" manages to inject three and a half minutes of goodness into your soul. "Wish In One Hand' with it's hook-laden chorus keeps things rocking and rolling. For a change of pace the boys down shift with, "Woman in the Moon" while the gritty swagger of "Payback’s a Bitch" picks things up once again. The rest of the album features acoustic-based tracks that act as foil for the more up-tempo material including the laid back  "Too High" the charming acoustic draw of "Randolph County Farewell", the adrenaline pumping swagger of "Lay it All On Me" and "No Way Back to Eden". Finishing things off with, "Fire In The Hole". There's certain styles of music that are just meant to be heard. Blackberry Smoke's brand of southern fried, David Allen Coe meets Lynyrd Skynyrd honky-tonkin' rock is certainly one of them. 'Holding All The Roses finishes as it started, with a southern rock feel laced with mid-tempo, guitars. All in all a solid effort. I'm sure if you asked the band's fans what they think about this new recording, they'd tell you, as would I, that right now, Black berry Smoke are holding all the aces. I for one is sold and look forward to a long long future from the "Future of Southern Rock".
- Highly Recommended
Tony @ The Dedicated Rocker Society/ All Access Magazine

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