Celebrated blues rock guitarist and singer-songwriter, Ben Poole, releases his second studio album, 'Time Has Come' via Manhaton Records this Friday 1st April which has been produced by King King’s drummer, Wayne Proctor.
Ben opens with 'Lying To Me' and immediately Proctor's production smacks you in the face with its cool keys and backing vocals complementing BP's soft, but, crystal clear vocal. But it's the guitar mix that catches the ear on this track - surprisingly not about infidelity - but more about life and how 'you don't reap what you sow'. Poole's funky 'wachichoo' guitar, catchy chorus and a trademark guitar solo outro ticks all the right boxes. More of 'YDRWYS' on his second track - although this time it is about a relationship on 'I Think I Love You Too Much'. This has more of the expected Bluesy feel to it and despite the neat harmonies and another catchy chorus, BP's roller coaster of a guitar solo with guest Aynsley Lister does all the talking. The acoustic gentleness of 'Longing For A Woman' shows Poole's genre versatility with this Country Rock sandwich with an electric guitar solo in the middle before it comfortably retreats back to its roots. Very reminiscent of Welsh band The Storys who split in 2010 - check them out. The Country flavour continues albeit with more of a 'Pop' feel on 'If You Want To Play With My Heart' - Poole again pulling out both another great chorus and guitar solo out of his locker.
The momentum slows with 'Time Might Never Come' although the quality is still there on this atmospheric, moody, Blues classic - that entices you into another superb guitar solo plus some great keyboards. Ben demonstrates he literally has 'Soul' on 'Stay At Mine' which rocks n' rolls with his groovy guitar work and his soulful voice is even more evident on 'You've Changed' given its delightful simplicity. 'Just When You Thought It Was Safe' is a boppy affair and further emphasises the unpredictability of this album if you are expecting wall to wall Blues Rock - although just to keep the Blues Police happy Ben throws in another classy Blues guitar solo. From boppy to poppy on 'Whoever Invented Love' as Poole's sweet vocals are bookended by some further excellent guitar work whilst we are back to more familiar Blues territory with the final track - 'The Question Why'. Whilst not exactly what Blues Rock fans might have been expecting, the obvious versality of this album not only explores Ben's Hendrix, Healey, Moore and B.B. influences, but it also doffs its cap to Cray, Lang and Mayer plus has the physical input of Freischlander, Sharpville and compadre Stevie Nimmo. However, the real beauty of the album is the crafting of ten great tracks that have the undoubted bolt-on capacity to stand out in a Blues Rock arena. Just make sure then that you catch Ben on the remainder of his double header UK tour with Stevie N. - you won't be sorry!