Joe Perkins

Based in Bristol is Joe Perkins, and he seems to be a musician with unlimited capability. Drawing on influences from Vai, and Satriani, and a host of others, he has produced any amazing debut album to show-case his talents, although this is not a collection of guitar noodling tracks.

…and what is even more amazing is that he is giving it away!

So I popped his new CD into the player, all the time wondering what was going to burst forth from the speakers as I looked at the promo photo of him stood against a backdrop in a Hawaiin shirt holding his guitar.

So I hit play…

First impression, not including the Hawaiin shirt, or the metallic red envelope it arrived in (which made the Good Lady go “Why don’t I get letters like that!?”); Wow!

Joe Perkins

The album is a little bit of a mishmash of styles, like a greatest hits album of a band who have an extensive back catalogue. Impressive for a debut album! But this is to be expected as it is a collaboration with various artists. In fact every track features a different guest artist. To be fair, the clue is in the title, and it is a great showcase for the talent and ability that Joe has, as well as the emerging vocalists. This shows Joes approach to modern music production, as he proclaims that the “album” does not really exist in its traditional form any more as people tag tracks, and then add them to 1000’s of others in a collection.

Opening with the appropriate, and rocking and heavy sounding “Kick It Out!” it could almost be a Foo Fighters track, great sound, fast paced and full of energy. The vocals shout out “I don’t know where I am going baby” which seems appropriate for a debut album, especially a free one, that could open many doors.

Followed by “Tell Me Baby” Hannahs vocals provide a change of tact, it is more punchy track with a slight grungy under current, with an almost drum led feel to it maintaining the energy started with “Kick It Out”.

Almost a curve ball here, “Have It All” has an Irish feel, with almost the timings of a jig. But this does not follow through with the rest of the Track, with easy flowing vocals, electric guitar backdrop in places, and and vocals hint at dollops of Americana. This might be one for fans of Billy Vincent. With it’s tale of a broken man

“Friday Night” is what I can only describe as a pub fight song. However, lyrically it is quite a cutting and witty take on the Friday night culture found in parts of this country. Starting with a mix of guitar picking and electric distortion Andys vocals give the perfect delivery and the track kicks in with its bouncy rhythm, no doubt a crowd pleaser this one!

In contrast this is followed with “Reduced To Clear” with it’s open, almost sound scape feel, and the poignant lyrics “Reading the same old story, Fighting the war without the glory”. The track evolves into a powerful force with great guitar work.

Joe Perkins

Closing the album is almost quirky “The Ice & The Snow”, which is appropriate as the weather had just turned! Another female vocalist, Alices’ distinctive vocal delivery works perfectly with the timing of this track. Whether this is to fit the music or her “normal” approach I don’t know, but it works. It works very well.

I have not mentioned every track, which is not a reflection of the quality the quality of the material or the collaborator(s) involved. Although, there are a few names I will try and keep an eye out for. There is such a variety here, that most people will find something that hooks them in.

As already mentioned the album could be perceived as a bit of a miss-mash of styles, yet every track comes across with ease and flows with little to no apparent effort. Having been involved in every aspect of the album, from inception, writing, through to performing and production, it a highly polished piece of work.

If the few tracks I have highlighted have peaked your interest then go and download the album, and show your support. Then put the album on shuffle and kick-back! Whatever route or style Joe takes with his next album it will be guaranteed to be great, especially if it shows his passion and determination to be involved at every stage.

“I just made it with my mates,” shrugs Perkins. “And, we had such fun doing it – which is the way I think music should be made. There are mistakes, comedy moments and a significant “cheese” factor, but if I liked the sound of something then it stayed in. There were no higher powers telling me to produce a hit single, master it louder or – worse still – take out the bagpipes!”

Now bookmark his home page, make a note in your diary for Feb. 11th, and get ready to download the album from his website; The track “High Flying” will be available in advance from the 4th.

Track Listing
Kick It Out (feat. Seb Clark)
Tell Me Baby (feat. Hannah Griffiths)
Flying High (feat. Ellie Price)
Have It All (Feat. Gareth Ashworth)
Friday Night (Let’s Start A Fight) (feat. Andy Charles)
Reduced To Clear (feat. Stu Collins)
Staring At The Sun (feat. Charlotte Gilpin)
Six Days A Week (feat. Cherishport)
Run Away (feat. Frankie McKernan)
Our Love Is Golden (feat. Poppy Dumbrell)
Through The Motions (feat. Emma Johnson)
The Ice & the Snow (feat. Alice Tolchard)


Words by Jon.

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