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Samarkind: Samarkind
Samarkind 2017 Self-titled Debut CD Album Review

Samarkind: Samarkind

Melodic Hard Blues Rock
5.0/5.0

You might be surprised when I say that some weeks the music I consider for review is so predictable to be merely mundane. And then I have to find words to say about it. I'm not necessarily looking for something wildly novel, merely something that gets my attention in a different sort of way. This week, that difference comes with Samarkind and their self-titled debut album of finely crafted classic hard rock with a blues groove. Samarkind features an international cast of players: Polish guitarist Michal Kulbaka, Ireland's Mark Dempsey on bass guitar and David Byrne on vocals, and South African born drummer Marius Appelgryn.

Samarkind Band Photo

Samarkind

Now you're thinking, what's big deal? Blues hard rock? There's a lot of that going around right now. And you would be right. Inglorious, Black Cat Bones, and Heavy Thrills come to mind. Samarkind easily fits into that company. Their sound drifts back to Seventies heavy rock, loaded with of lots rousing riffs, riding over some bitchin' rhythm and groove. Vocalist David Byrne adds his complimentary earthy and soulful voice to their sound. Hear his passion in the smoldering ballad Good Man Call (Did you know he was a heavy metal singer in the Eighties? Nope. Me neither.)

Guitarist Kulbaka is both a master and a maverick on the fret board. His guitar lines swerve and maneuver between classic rock, blues hustle, and country slide and slither. Sometimes they all come together in a single song like Skinny Rivers, Black Rain, or Touch Stone Man. In Black Rain finds him sounding like he's doing some bottle-neck slide guitar. With Touch Stone Man, it sure sounds like his picking a Dobro, or making his Les Paul sound the same. That song, Fire And Blood, and Black Rain are also examples of how Samarkind sounds more like an American band, playing a Southern country blues rock. They're taking a blue line drive that runs from Muscle Shoals to Memphis, through Nashville, then on to Chicago, and back again. Outstanding stuff.

I liked everything about Samarkind and their music (even if the album is short with eight songs at 33 minutes). For genuine and classic blues hard rock, Samarkind is the real deal. Get it. Highly recommended.



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The Bottom Line

I liked everything about Samarkind and their music. For genuine and classic blues hard rock, Samarkind is the real deal. Get it. Highly recommended.

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