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Joe Bonamassa ROYAL TEA.jpg

Following on from Rainbreakers first EP 'Blood Not Brass' comes 'Rise Up' a new five track collection by this highly talented four piece from Shrewsbury. All songs on offer here have a very retro feel to them and on first listen reminded me very much of the old school type production used to such great effect on Rival Sons 'Great-Western Valkyrie' album, only this time with more Soul added to the Blues/Rock mix. Opening track 'On My Own' has a very soulful, psychedelic bass driven feel to it with a subtle electric guitar sound in the background, all of which help to tell the story of a positive relationship breakdown (never knew there was such a thing) accompanied by great vocals by Ben Edwards. A very classy opener.

The title track 'Rise Up' with its opening line of "Wake Up And Open Your Eyes" sets out the message for this song very early, which is go for your dreams and don't get pulled down. The longest song here finds the time for a psychedelic middle section complete with female backing vocal harmonies to accompany it's consistent soulful groove. My personal favourite 'Waiting On You' is next, a very smooth understated track which builds nicely from a great opening guitar and soft vocals into an excellent song which would be at home on any late night radio station or maybe a future (sadly not) Amy Winehouse album. An optimistic song, tinged with sadness. A terrific song.

'Perception' follows in the same vein sound wise, but has a more positive message about how much better life can be with a little love in it, complete with a gentle Reggae feel, it's slightly meandering in the middle section, but is short enough at four minutes not to outstay it's welcome. A gentle drum and simple guitar bring in the final track 'Living Free', then once the great vocals kick in, it builds nicely into a tension filled piece about everyday internal struggles. Complemented by a great guitar solo, it eventually returns to the calm feel of the opening.Overall I would say it's an EP that requires a certain late night relaxing mood to fully enjoy. Whilst it is certainly more soulful that the usual Blues/Rock out there, I look forward to a full album by the guys, as Rainbreakers would appear to be a band whose star is very much on the rise.

Phil C.

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