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June 4, 2014

Blues Doodles Review 10 out of 10

Mark Wigston

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Matt Schofield
Far As I Can See
Mascot Label Group

Far as I Can See is a stylish album masterfully produced and played with style and panache, confirming once again that Matt Schofield is the real deal when it comes to modern-day electric blues guitarists. He takes from the past the bends, shapes and then moulds the riffs and licks into a shape that is instantly recognisable as his. Added to this is Jonny Henderson the maestro of Hammond Organ who adds so much tonal colour to the tracks from full crescendo of sound to gentle extended chords as on ‘The Day You Left’ the perfect underpinning when combined with the precision drumming of Jordan John. Throughout the album there are little sparkles of fat bass sound not courtesy of Jonny’s left hand but from Carl Standbridge using electric or upright bass. ‘Hindsight’; has a bluesy, jazzy late-night feel with the added dimension of some glorious horns from The Last Minute horns who play off the Hammond. ‘Oakville Shuffle’ the instrumental that allows the guitar to take control an don this track we see the addition of Denny Ilett doing the first guitar solo with a deeper jazz infused sound-scape the music swallows you up as Matt’s clear guitar sound comes to the fore. Matt’s vocals are not to be ignored they are so often overlooked as we listen to the guitar work, is this track a bit Hendrix? or is there a Satriani influence?, or Robben Ford? or SRV… sit back listen to the groove being created let Matt’s personality infuse you with bluesy funky delight like the almost jam like feel of ‘Getaway’ The version of Neville Brother’s ‘Yellow Moon’ is something very special with its funky Latino beat that makes the re-working fresh modern, love-it!. Followed by a change of tempo with some rockin’ straight out of Texas and definitely gets the feet tapping and brings a smile to your face. The final track ‘Red Dragon’ leaves you in awe of the musicianship you are privileged to have on your deck at home, Matt’s vocals are full of soul and hidden depths perfectly matching the tone created on the guitar a demonstration of the skills of Simon Law as sound engineer on the album. Far As I can See is blues guitar musical tonic for the soul.

Bluesdoodles gives this CD out of TEN doodle paws a doodle rating of  TEN ………

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