Sunday, March 12, 2017

blues pills

howdy pop pickers


it is once again, look you see, that i am indebted to that smart Vintage TV channel for introducing me to some class new vibes. and, indeed, phew that it was restored as a channel to that 'Freesat' thing, for this is the only form of broadcasts we can get in our home, to be sure.

but anyway, the vibes. Blues Pills would be the name of the new group which i have recently discovered. yes, indeed, that's why the title of this blog post is what it is, and no it is not a reference to Quadrophenia or any such 60s British Mods concern. but let's pause and take a moment, since i have mentioned it, to remember how brilliant Quadrophenia is.

right, with that out of the way, and yes with me stalling a bit to compose my thoughts about what exactly to write, on we go, then, to the majesty and excellence of Blues Pills.



the above, in appropriate Commodore 64 mode, reflects the two albums which Blues Pills have released, and are as point of fact the two my (considerably) better half and i elected to purchase after hearing some two, possibly three, songs by the band on their Vintage TV session. they were, frankly, just that good that we could not see a way in which either album would disappoint.

i have been wrestling with what, specifically or exactly, to write about the band. my (considerably) better half suggested i just write "they are awesomeness". also, she has apologised in advance for when i next get in her car (she quite kindly allows me to go and replenish the petrol reserves for her), as the stereo will be quite loud with one of their CDs in.



where to start? at the beginning, i guess. Blues Pills "happened" in 2011, with their debut album, the self-titled Blues Pills, coming about in 2014 and the follow up, Lady In Gold, landing in 2016. which just shows once again how excellent 2016 continues to prove to have been for the vibes. it would appear that they have a quite prolific passion for performing live, as they seem to be doing gig after gig.

what sort of music do they do, then? i am happy to settle on it being called rock, but Wikipedia reckons it is correct and right to call them hard rock, blues rock and psychedelic rock. as Wikipedia have gone to great lengths to show how right on and correct they are this must be true. also, the bio section off of Blues Pills official website just links to their Wikipedia page.

as it happens, the Wikipedia entry is quite correct, for they are all of those things at different stages of each of the two albums, and then some.



the most frequent comparison, for comparisons make things easy, i have seen for Blues Pills is to the excellence that was Big Brother & The Holding Company. this is certainly valid as and when Blue Pills turns on the psychedelic rock switch, for a lot of it is reminiscent of the 60s West Coast psychedelic movement. it's also a touch lazy, however, and has more often than not probably been made as a comparison simply due to both bands having a lady of the female variety as vocalist.

more than once i have seen and heard the vocalist out of Blues Pills, Elin Larsson (no relation), compared to Janis. this is unfair and misleading. undoubtedly Janis was an influence, and it is true that Elin is one hell of a powerful vocalist, but she sounds little if much like Ms Joplin. she is very much her own voice, and it remains that the only real revisit of Janis Joplin the world has had since 1970 was when Axl somehow channelled her voice for Guns N Roses' bizarre re-reading of Knockin' On Heaven's Door.



who, if i was called upon to do so, would i rather compare Blues Pills to, in order as to give you a hint or gesture of what sound to expect? Big Brother is not entirely wrong, but i'd lean more towards Jefferson Airplane. at least when they were cool, and before they went all corporate rock as Starship. there's also a healthy and heavy Hendrix influence on the guitar at times, and the rolling drums from time to time remind one of why exactly Led Zeppelin were so powerful. and, in terms of drumming, you can throw in some Spinal Tap too, i suppose, since they seem to have a different drummer on each of the two records.

one of the biggest influences i am detecting, however, is the earlier, more blues driven sound of Fleetwood Mac from the days when Peter Green was in the band. one track on the debut album, Astraplane, could easily have slotted onto one of the earlier FM records from an instrumental perspective. 

yes, it is indeed true that a lady vocalist of the female persuasion is rare in rock; an exception rather than a rule. i am not going to get bogged down in all of that, unless i have already. for me it's a fairly simple and straightforward case of her being a stunning vocalist, and i don't really care what colour or gender someone is so long as the vibes are awesome, man.



so where should you start with listening if you want to discover Blues Pills and sample whether their vibes are your bag? i would be sure there's stuff on that there You Tube thing, not sure about "streaming" services. we picked up both albums for south of £20 in total, and that includes a fancy DVD of them live with the 2nd album. no, not gotten around to watching it yet.

yes, you could absolutely go right ahead and say that Blues Pills are rehashing and "remembering" classic songs and sounds from years gone by. isn't that, though, what all bands have done since around 1969? there's a distinctly familiar feel to the sound they do, but yet still it all feels fresh, new, a different spin and regenerated. i might not have much to me in terms of being a voice of influence, but all the same i would not be encouraging people to discover this most smart band if they were simply some sort of tribute or rip-off act.

anyway, i am off to listen to some more Blues Pills. and maybe have a gander at this DVD.



be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




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