Katy Guillen And The Girls review…March 7, 2018….

KATY GUILLEN AND THE GIRLS

REMEMBER WHAT YOU KNEW BEFORE

VIZZTONE RECORDS VT–KGG–04

SLINGSHOT–THE LOAD–WAITING TILL THE DAY–GABRIELA–HUMBUCKER–CAN’T LIVE HERE ANY MORE–STALLING ON DREAMS–BIWI–QUIVER–FUNNY PLACE–IF YOU WERE GONE

Katy Guillen And The Girls have been blazing a blues trail throughout not only their home base in the Midwest, but all over the country, including the King Biscuit Festival, down Helena way, and The Big Blues Bender out West.  A true “power trio,” Katy is on vocals, all guitars, and piano.  Claire Adams is on bass and piano, and Stephanie Williams is on percussion.

For their latest album for Vizztone Records, they revisited some of the material from their earlier albums, breaking them down into their base elements, concentrating more on the arrangements, this time with predominantly-acoustic instrumentation and piano.  Thus the title, “Remember What You Knew Before,” which contains elements of blues, folk, and even girl-group pop over these eleven originals.  There is a decidedly-more mellow scope to these songs, showing not only versatility in the songwriting, but in the backing players also.

The whole set has a feeling of wanderlust, and that vibe leads off in “Slingshot,” as Katy begs to have “my body in a Slingshot/pull it back and let it go,”   and “land in someplace I don’t know,” set over acoustic guitars and The Girls on backing vocals.  “Waiting Till The Day” is a story of a lover, with “imprints of your hands on my skin,” while “Can’t Live Here Anymore” bristles with 60’s girl-group psychedelia.

We had two favorites, too.  “Quiver” is one of the set’s most unique cuts, a heart-pounding exercise in flamenco rhythms.  And,  “The Load,” with its acoustic dobro that gives way to a fiery electric solo at the bridge, lets you know that this girl has got some serious Delta in her DNA.

Katy Guillen And The Girls always intend to be on the cutting edge of contemporary blues.  Enjoy a new spin on their established sound with the aptly-titled, “Remember What You Knew Before.”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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