WEntus Blues Band review…September 21, 2019….

WENTUS BLUES BAND

WITH DUKE ROBILLARD

TOO MUCH MUSTARD

RAMASOUND 1419

STAYED AT THE PARTY–2:19–JUDGMENT DAY–FIRST WE TAKE MANHATTAN–SHE’S A KILLER HOT BLONDE–RIGHT IN YOUR ARMS–TOO MUCH MUSTARD–SHE MADE MY MIND–I HEAR YOU KNOCKIN’–MIRANDA–YOU GOT MY LOVE–SELMA–FEELS SO BAD–WHERE HAVE ALL THE SONGBIRDS GONE–PASSIONATE KISS

Duke Robillard first met the young men of the Wentus Blues Band during a Scandinavian tour back in 1987.  Then, they were so young that their parents had to act as chaperones.  Fast-forward some thirty years, and Wentus is one of the most solid, in-demand groups all over Europe and Scandinavia.  When they asked the Duke to produce and play on their latest album, his answer was a resounding “YES!!”  Thus, they all headed up to the Lakewest Recording in West Greenwich, RI, and the results are astounding, with “Too Much Mustard!”  The fellows mix some of their own material with some of Duke’s, and some well-known standards.

Our hero knows he did her wrong, and now all he’s got left is “the whistle and the steam,” ’cause “my baby’s leavin on the 2:19!”  Duke puts his Berry-pickin’ licks to good use on the Fifties’-inspired band original, “She’s A Killer Hot Blonde and she loves the blues!”  Pekka Grohn is all over the 88’s in the scaldin’-hot boogie instrumental that is the title cut, with dueling guitars from Duke and Niko Rippa, and they do a killer job on one of Duke’s originals, the minor-key, voodoo-vibe of “You Made My Mind, and now I’m walkin’ in circles just thinkin’ about you!”

Our favorite was a sweet, pastoral shot of soul. It’s a universal call for peace as our hero begs for “help from the sky” in “Where Have All The Songbirds Gone?”

The thing that impressed Duke about these young fellows back in 1987 was their deep respect for the vintage blues and R & B and its players, and that reverence carries over into today.  Duke’s friendship and his guidance as producer and fellow musician has made the Wentus Blues Band and “Too Much Mustard,” a joyous listen, indeed!!!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

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