The Best of 2017: top albums, top live acts – the reviewers’ choice
DAVE WILSON Live Editor
Worthy of mention/attention
POPA CHUBBY crossed over with the indie blues album ‘The Catfish’, while Kentucky band OTIS and their southern rock opus, ‘Eyes of The Sun’ on Purple Pyramid refreshed an often clichéd genre.
Big thanks to Pete Feenstra with Get Ready To Rock for mentioning our new album as one of the best Top Albums Of 2017!
Format: CD – Digital / Label: Purple Pyramid – Cleopatra Records Release Date: September 15, 2017
Text: Jos Verhagen
OTIS brings a follow-up to their debut album ( “Tough Times” ), something that will not forget you soon, with Eyes Of The Sun. Think back to the seventies with greats like The Allman Brothers Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Creedence Clearwater Revival. This is the old school Southern Rock, as we hear little more and where OTIS treats us here. It’s not true that the Southern Rock is dead but this is a band that honors the greatness of the past.
The current banners of the Southern Rock like Blackberry Smoke, Drive By Truckers, Tedeschi Trucks Band, which have given the original a different turn. It is therefore nice to hear that there are four young Kentucky guests who remain true to the Southern Rock roots. Those roots with strong singers, driven excited guitar work and improvisation (jammen) until you find the right feel. That does OTIS; Boone Froggett (vocal guitar), Steve Jewell (guitar), John Seeley (bass) and Andrew Gilpin ( drums) here with ‘Eyes Of The Sun’.
The vocal of Boone Froggett who has something, it sounds so familiar to you in the ears that you just keep trying to paste a name. The betrayal are class, its drive. Together with Steve Jewell they bring guitar fireworks that equate the glory of Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers, The Outlaws with ease. Cracked and well placed on the record by producers Greg Martin and Paul Nelson and engineer David Barrick. Bassist John Seeley and drummer Andrew Gilpin carry an important part, especially Andrew Gilpin’s fine drummer deserves a plume.
On ‘Eyes Of The Sun’ they bring a few Southern Rock crackers who will remember me for a while, I can not get enough of this amazing guitar sound. The cd opens with Change and then the single Blind Hawg. They set the trend for the rest of this album. Eyes Of The Sun, the title track and Home have that Skynyrd feel, that works double guitar, the stuning bass, the solo work. While Shake You and Turn To Stone turn you back to The Allman Brothers. Singer Boone Frogget at his best. Whoever plays here at Hammond has not been able to find out, but it contributes to the overall feel of these songs.
With Washed My Hands and Lovin ‘Man they continue to play strong songs full of the guitar work that features this entire CD. After an acoustic trip Relief In C , the best song of this album, Chasing The Sun , follows, this slow blues is a classic with a story, with guitar work to enjoy. The seven-minute shutter Let Your Love Shine Down let’s hear that these young Kentucky dogs deliver a fantastic album here.
I can only hope one thing, who are going to put these guys on stage at a blues festival next year? Find your alternate program in your program, and let the many lovers of a delicious pot of Southern rock be very happy.
Tracklist: 01. Change 02. Blind Hawg 03. Eyes Of The Sun 04. Home 05. Shake You 06. Turn To Stone 07. Washed My Hands 08. Lovin ‘Man 09. Relief In C 10. Chasing The Sun 11. Let Your Love Shine Down