Big Wolf Band – Be Free Review
By Tom Faddis
Big Wolf Band has been steadily growing their fanbase with their brand of blues-rock. Vocalist Zoe Green heads up the group. Zoe known for her ala Janis Joplin style delivers heavy hitting blues hinged singing. Green’s natural performance demeanor has certainly added to the power of their live performances. The band includes, Guitar/vocals – Jonathan Earp; Vocals – Zoe Green; Bass – Mick Jeynes; Drums – Tim Jones and Keys – Paul Brambani. Their latest album Be Free is an aptly title offering, it accentuates the comradery and clear freedom Big Wolf exhibits as a band.
“Walk in My Shoes” starts with a descending guitar figure over a rumbling drum groove that screams modern blues. Vocalist Green enters with a big female voice that has just enough edge to make you believe it and enough attitude to punch you if you don’t. The guitar fills match Green’s style and the organ builds energy. The vocal harmonies blend nicely with the descending opening figure. Earp’s guitar solo is a blues rock beast with bends, trills, quick lines and blues flavoring. This song opens the album and sets the tone for all the great tunes and playing to come.
With a warmly distorted guitar melody opening the track, “Better Man” is a relaxed rock tune that has Green’s gravelly voice leading the way. The song has nice band hits to keep the blues flowing. Jones and Jeynes keep the music feeling great as Brambani colors with his keyboard sounds and Earp tears up the fret board on the guitar. Big Wolf Band keeps things clear and to the point, which is great melodies sung with heart and feel good playing. Simple and direct works!
The blues has sustained itself for years due to the relatable lyrics and grinding melodies that shoots straight to the soul. The old saying goes, you have to know the blues to play the blues. Clearly, Big Wolf have paid their dues, as the depth of their journey shows in every tune.
Release Date: June 27, 2019
Label: Big Wolf Records