Review from “Blues Matters”
Blue Bishops – In the Red (Produced by John Leckie & Stuart Epps)
This rising band of veterans features, among others, ‘Gentleman’ Jim Rodford of Zombies, Kinks et al fame. This is a really good production and is full of good ideas. In fact I reckon that several of the ideas have been on the table for a while awaiting the opportunity to come to fruition. I say this because I hear clear echoes of that period when British Blues morphed into prog rock. There are some Cream style harmonies and a fair helping of the kind of broken rhythm patterns that characterised that period notably Led Zeppelin.
It is all very well done but I really felt that the bands’ own songs were much stronger than their covers. In that sense I was disappointed that the album opens with a John Fogerty cover-: Chaps your own songs are better! Have confidence in yourselves you do not need covers. Two stand-out tracks emphasize this point – ‘WAKE UP CALL’ and ‘CREDIT CARD’, I’ve heard these two live, they really work and the recording has done them justice.
Another good track is ‘THE SEA WILL RISE’ a song about the damage we are doing to the planet, the musical structure to this, by Simon Burrett, is very retro-styled, the doom-laden lyrics might induce some paranoia if we have a hot summer, but hey, just imagine you’re back in the summer of love for a while and it’ll pass. The best of the covers is ‘THE PRICE OF LOVE’; Simon Burrett’s guitar work is very good throughout. The album was produced and mastered at Abbey Road and the sound is of first quality. The artwork is interesting and there is even someone who looks like me but with half of a false beard in the centre spread: the mind boggles. Well done guys.