Ruf Records, 2014
By Phillip Smith; February 21, 2014
Keeping with tradition, Kim Simmonds and Savoy Brown has returned once again to the studio to record another batch of hot electric Blues for our listening pleasure. The album is called Goin’ to the Delta, and alongside of Simmonds, is bassist Pat DeSalvo and drummer Garnet Grimm.
What I really like about this disc, besides the music itself, is the cohesiveness of the songs, all penned by Simmonds, by the way. This is album-oriented music, which is best heard from beginning to end, unlike the music popularized with the MP3 generation, where the song is the final product, and not the album. Simmonds takes us on a journey fit for the Blues, which passes through the realms of infatuation, rejection, loneliness, desperation, and reconciliation.
Simmonds sets everything up with the first track, “Laura Lee”. It’s fast-paced with a hint of rockabilly. This is roadhouse Blues at its best. Following with “Sad News”, he brings it down a couple of notches, both in mood and tempo. If I didn’t know better, I’d say this one, about lost love, was written in the Thirties. It sounds so timeless and genuine. Then, there is “Nuthin’ Like the Blues”, a fun and cleverly written homage to the Blues itself, with references to howlin’ wolves, rollin’ and tumblin’, as well as dusting brooms. Although the song doesn’t sound like the legendary classic, “Crossroads”, it certainly makes me think of it when I hear it.
I love the way the instrumental track, “Cobra” gets my adrenalin flowing. I call this ear candy because of its fast moving catchy riffs and hit bluesy licks. Then, I like the fun little romp Simmonds takes us on, as he heads out for a little free-trade non-committal loving, in the song “Turn Your Lamp On “. He then breaks out some killer slide on “I Miss Your Love”, as he pines for the woman who left him for another man. Closing on a positive note, Simmonds plays his heart out and raises the mood and energy with “Going Back”, about going back to his baby because he’s been away too long.
Savoy Brown has been a mainstay in the Rock and Blues community for the better portion of fifty years, and I’m so glad to see their legacy continue on with the album, Goin’ to the Delta.