Fo’ Reel review….October 20, 2014…

FO’ REEL

HEAVY WATER

FO’ REEL BAND RECORDS

BREAKING UP SOMEBODY’S HOME–HEAVY WATER–LEAVE YOUR LOVE ALONE–BLUES–GATE–WHAT I CAN DO–WHAT’S GOING ON IN MY HOME–JUST AS I AM–SHAKE ‘N’ BAKE–OUTSIDE LOVE–TATER

Fo’ Reel is a New Orleans-based blues and funk band that is the brainchild of guitarist Mark Domizio.  The fellows bring to the table a serious groove that says a lot about the sounds coming out of the Crescent City. These cats have all been around, and have some serious resumes’, and it is a pleasure to hear them on this collaboration, entitled “Heavy Water.”  Joining Mark on this collection are ex-Allman Brother Johnny Neel on B-3 and keys, C. P. Love and Rick Lawson on vocals David Hyde on bass, and Daryl Burgess and Allyn Robinson on drums.  Also along for the ride is a full-blown horn section, too!

This set is as eclectic as it is energetic.  C. P.’s Delta-infused vocals kick things off with “Breaking Up Somebody’s Home,” while Mark’s expressive lead lines blend well with Rick’s vocals on the minor-key “Blues,” that lets us all know that, eventually, the blues gets us all.

“What I Can Do”  is characterized by Mark’s slide playing and C. P.’s vocals set over a Latin beat.  Johnny Neel’s B-3 adds a churchy, testifyin’ feel to C. P.’s “soul man” vocal read of “Just As I Am.”  “Shake ‘N’ Bake” is a super-cool shot of dance floor funk, while Mark’s slide keeps the deep blues groove of “Outside Love” moving over Rick’s impassioned vocals as he laments giving in to temptation and his “bad habits.”

We had two favorites, too.  The instrumental track, “Gate,” swings along a jazzy groove, and is done in tribute to the style of Gatemouth Brown.  And, the title cut is as cool as it gets,  about that place we all know, where you can “get a swig of Heavy Water,” to help “bring out the blues in me!!”

If you enjoy danceable, soul-drenched blues and funk, then “Heavy Water” is a set you will appreciate.  The musicianship is spot-on, and the fellows keep the groove alive throughout.  Fo’ Reel is for real, indeed!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

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