Big Wolf Band have been building themselves a big reputation in the UK and Europe for a few years now: I reviewed their debut album A Rebels Story from 2017 and was very impressed by it. I also remember the lead vocalist on the album was the excellent guitarist Jonathan Earp: fast forward a couple of years and Jon has taken a back seat and decided to do backing vocals with a brand new album and also a brand new singer Zoe Green, herself a stalwart of the blues scene; not only an incredible voice but it has created a totally new dynamic to the band, this collaboration of Jon and Zoe together in this band is like a marriage in heaven.[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQlH5bxE6aU?start=5&w=560&h=315]
There are thirteen songs here with wonderful stories and a mix of all types of blues but with this duo it has bought a lot more soul to the band, Zoe and Jon just bounce off each other so well: his guitar skill complimenting her incredible vocal range and Zoe brings out the best in all of them.
The first song on the album WALK IN MY SHOES with the wonderful Hammond organ of Paul Brambini playing behind the rhythm section of Tim Jones’ hard and heavy drum beats and the humming bass of Mick Jeynes on the intro before the sound of Jon’s electric screams in and you get the first taste of Zoe’s great voice this lets you know straight away you are in for a treat.
BETTER MAN, NOBODYS HOME and the title track BE FREE are three brilliant blues rock numbers which showcase the full power of Zoe’s vocal and also nice harmonies with Jon, but best of all some blistering guitar solos from him.
The whole history of the blues can be heard on this, the Peter Green sound of LOVING LIKE A FOOL: one of my personal favourites, and the harmonizing is just superb, Cream and Clapton on HEAVY LOAD, you also hear Alvin Lee, Freddie King and even a bit of Hendrix later on in the album, but everything they play that dynamic vocal of Zoe gives each song its own individuality.[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBwDhRVk0_g&w=560&h=315]
The thing I love about this band so much is the big combination of Guitar and keyboards it just sounds like they’re having a jam and enjoying every moment of, now with the addition of Zoe in the mix: well they were great live before when I saw them, but I just know now they are going to be sensational. If you like your blues old school, then go out and buy this to add your record collection.
1, Walk in My Shoes
2, Better Man
3, Nobody’s Home
4, Be Free
5, Loving Like A Fool
6, Keep Fighting Back
7, Heavy Load
8, I Don’t Live for Tomorrow
9, Never That Easy
10, Looking in Your Eyes
11, Sweet Talking
12, Super Animal
13, Just Can’t Find You
Review by Dave Martin for Jace Media