Category Archives: REVIEWS

Kentucky heat defeats the Beast from the East …

Category : REVIEWS

Tufnell Park saw two rare events last Friday: a train-stopping covering of snow and a jaw-dropping first UK show for OTIS.

Plunger had first been tipped off about the Kentucky Southern rockers by 68-75’s Suzanne Sledge back in 2014 but had pretty much given up hopes of seeing them here in Blighty, so we were mightily pissed off when this show clashed with an already-agreed gig elsewhere. Enter the Beast from the East, stranding the unfortunate act we were meant to see, prompting a last-minute online ticket purchase and a fingers-crossed Northern Line trip into the snow. Sadly it appeared the British Fail transport network had stopped more than a few getting to the Boston Music Room but those who did make it along basked in the Deep South heat of a sizzling set.

The four-piece of Boone Froggett on guitar and powerful, gutsy vocals (somewhere between Ronnie, Ricky and Gregg!) Steve Jewell Jr. (guitar), John Seeley (bass) and Andrew Gilpin (drums) distils the spirit of classic Southern blues rock for a new generation, blending raw heavy blues like the Hooker-meets-Mountain bludgeon of opener Rattlesnake and the minimalist, wild-slide topped Tough Times (which segued seamlessly into Bo Diddley’s Who Do You Love) with big ballsy rockers like the down-and-dirty Blackfoot-like Washed My Hands.

There’s more to OTIS than Good Ol’ Boy bluster though: like all the best Southern bands they are more sophisticated than that. The Swamp Music-y backwoods romp of Lovin’ Man saw more complex rhythmic arrangements and a nice tricksy descending unison riff to a dead-stop finish; a brutal-but-clever Muleish riff with harmonised twin guitar drove Shake You, with stylish off kilter drumming and flaring Collinsesque guitar before a fantastic, spacey Les Brers midbreak with Steve and Boone indulging in some lovely ABB noodling and sweet twin guitar.

Drinking Woman had a Mule flavour too, with Steve’s trenchant solo given hammer-blow backing from the other three, some taut squealing guitar from Boone and more tricksy rhythms heralding an impressive short tour of the kit from Andrew. A touch of Soulshine appeared in the Southern soul psychedelia of Let Your Love Shine Down, with its splashes of exquisite crying guitar and sweet three-way harmony vocals from Boone, Steve and John culminating in a fine a cappella passage that introduced the highlight of the show: Steve’s lovely Allmansy discursive solo (with teases for Blue Sky and Jessica) was joined by Boone for more eye-watering interplay that picked up speed and intensity for a Rossington/Collins helter-skelter finish.

After Change, a final trip into slide-drenched barrelling roadhouse rock, and Blind Hawg (another violent, jagged riff underpinned by punishing drums and rolling thunder bass), OTIS were joined on stage by fellow Kentuckians Black Stone Cherry. Chris Robertson (vox/guitar) and Jon Lawhon (bass) took their places for the inevitable blues band encore Going Down, with Boone and Chris trading vocal and guitar lines, before a quick musical chairs shuffle brought Ben Wells (guitar) and John Fred Young (drums) on to join in a bustling canter through the Allman Brothers’ One Way Out.

It’s rare to hear Southern rock done ‘proper’ over here, and OTIS have just the right balance of the Skynyrd swagger, the Allmans inventiveness and Mule’s heft to tick all the boxes for Plunger. Hopefully it won’t be another four years til we see them here again.

#otis#blackstonecherry#bostonmusicroom#southern rock #plunger

New Segment: “The International Rock Review”

Category : REVIEWS


Hi Real Rockers!!!
Darren has a new segment called “The International Rock Review”. In this first clip he talks about the smokin’ blues rock band OTIS If you are a fan of The Allmans an Johnny Winter then you will love this band.

Check out this video on our YouTube Channel: Rock It Up! and don’t forget to subscribe!


Review: Music Street Journal | Gary Hill

Category : REVIEWS

Eyes of the Sun
Review by Gary Hill

If you dig a classic blues rock sound, there is plenty to like here. These guys almost feel like they should have been around in the 1970s. Yet, there is a crunchier, harder rocking edge than they would have had in that time period. This is a classic sounding album that has a freshness to its style.
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2018 Volume 1 at



Track by Track Review

Bluesy rocking stuff, this is a classy number. There are hints of things like the Allman Brothers on this. Still, other elements seem like Lenny Kravitz.

Blind Hawg
Another blues rock tune, I love the guitar sound on this thing. The cut has a great vibe and a lot of energy.

Eyes of the Sun
There is some killer slide guitar built into this beast. Perhaps the blues influence is even more pronounced here. This is a hot and slinky number.

Another stomping blues rocker, this might not be a big change, but it has a big sound.

Shake You
Another screaming hot stomper, this is another tune that makes me think of Lenny Kravitz in some ways. It can make out some hints of Grand Funk Railroad, too. Of course, this is more incendiary than either of those comparisons would indicate. There is a mellower jam mid-track that feels like something that could have come from the first Santana band.

Turn to Stone
A bit mellower, I don’t like this cut as well as I do the rest of them. It has a very classic sound, though. It just doesn’t seem to gel as well as the rest do. Still, there is some tasty guitar work, particularly the double soloing. A mellower kind of spacey jam at the end is a nice touch.

Washed My Hands
Although the basic concept isn’t changed, this is another killer blues rock stomper. It’s a screamer with both a powerhouse vocal performance and some meaty guitar work.

Lovin’ Man
In some ways this makes me think of early Aerosmith. I’m reminded a bit of ZZ Top, too. It’s all delivered with a very strong electric blues sound.

Relief in C
Starting with sitar, other acoustic instrumentation comes into the mix. This is set in a roots music vibe with almost a bluegrass goes Indian vibe to it. It really is a nice change of pace. This is the only instrumental on the disc, too.

Chasing the Sun
A slower blues rocker, this is classic stuff. I like it a lot. The guitar is classic. The whole cut really jams.

Let Your Love Shine Down
More of a soulful rocker, this has a classic rock vibe to it for sure. There is some more of that Allman Brothers thing in parts of this cut, particularly the involved jam late in the piece. I love the section with the multiple layers of vocals.

BallBuster Music: Quick-Tiques | Review by David LaDuke

Category : REVIEWS

Back in October of 2016 Guitarist Paul Nelson messaged me the following, “Thanks for turning me on to all this, Had a great time with Greg and Otis. In fact, he had such a great time he got them signed to Bullseye management, help them secured a record deal with Purple Pyramid Records (A division of Cleopatra) and even played on the album. Now OTIS are preparing to hit the European shores with their unique brand of down-home Southern fried Kentucky Rock, Blues & Roll. The band has already been paying their dues by doing road work with ‘Black Stone Cherry” and the Kentucky Headhunters’ here in the states. “Eyes Of The Sun.” showcases the band in a big way! Strong, solid musicianship of the highest caliber. Yes, I can hear the ZZ Topish influences, but there’s much more than that going on. Sounds of The Allman Brothers, Raging Slab, Molly Hatchet, 38 Special, Lynyrd Skynyrd but believe me; this is an OTIS record! Each musician here complements each other. The guitar sounds and mixed is one to be reckoned. These guys are pros, and this album shows that from track one forward. Powerful, passionate vocals, damn beautiful harmonies, and some of the finest arrangements I’ve have heard in some time! The two guitarist jell very well with each other, and the rhythm section no doubt delivers a strong foundation and punch. 1st track ‘Change’ begins with a muscular Allman Brother vibe and some nifty slide work.
Track 2 ‘Blind Hawg’ is a hard rocking blues outing which includes some well-crafted hooks to reel you right in. Overall you have ten tracks of pure Southern-fried hard rocking boogie blues and one acoustic outing to lighten the load a bit. OTIS is the real deal and determined the south shall rise again. There you have it. I washed my hands in dirty water!

Quick-Tiques | OTIS “Eyes Of The Sun” | Purple Pyramid Records
By David LaDuke January 5, 2018

Guitar Radio Show: Top 20 Albums of 2017 – #9 “Eyes of the Sun”

Category : REVIEWS

PODCAST: Here’s our Top 20 Albums for 2017. The records we just couldn’t stop listening to throughout the year…
Guitar Radio Show Ep 193 (79:09)

INK 19 – Year in Review

Category : REVIEWS

Year in Review

by Michelle Wilson


Eyes Of The Sun

Purple Pyramid Records/Cleopatra Records

When you have the likes of Greg Martin (Kentucky Headhunters), Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top) and Paul Nelson (Johnny Winter) on your team, you must be damn good. That’s exactly the case with Otis, a four-piece band who recently signed with Cleopatra Records, and deservedly so. Singer/guitarists Boone Froggett and Steve Jewell along with bassist/vocalist John Seeley and drummer/vocalist Andrew Gilpin round out the lineup of one of the hottest up-and-coming blues/rock bands on today’s music scene. And they have the chops to back it up. In 2014, the boys paid homage to the late, great John Brim with a mind-blowing tribute record, Tough Times, and it was only a matter of time before they would land on a label. Gleaning their sound from Muddy Waters, The Allman Brothers Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Wet Willie and a swirl of Southern rockers, the boys from Central Kentucky have created their own hard, tight blues-soaked rock sound. Co-produced by the band and David Barrick, and executive produced by Paul Nelson (who also plays guitar on the ZZ Top-ish “Lovin’ Man”), ten of the eleven cuts are Otis originals. The phenomenal Eddie Stone offers Hammond B3 accents on “Shake You,” “Turn To Stone” and “Chasing The Sun,” while the instrumental “Relief In C” with Danny Williams’ mandolin accompaniment hearkens back to the Lennon/McCartney gem, “Norwegian Wood.” Froggett’s gravelly vocals are the ideal complement to the band’s Southern rock leanings. Their one cover on the record, Cowboy Joe Babcock’s “I Washed My Hands In Muddy Waters” (Washed My Hands), famously recorded by Stonewall Jackson, Johnny Rivers, Charlie Rich and Elvis Presley, is reinterpreted by the band to become totally their own with a hard blues/rock edge. Keep an eye on this band because they are the real deal. 


Redondo y con Aguejero – Top 10 Albums of the Year

Category : REVIEWS

Otro disco de debut, que se cuela entre mis favoritos.
Otis una banda con el mejor de los sonidos, del más clásico Southern-blues-rock de siempre… Toda una exhibición de poderío.  Enorme banda!!
“Another debut album, which is among my favorites.
Otis a band with the best of sounds, the most classic Southern-blues-rock ever … All an exhibition of power. Huge band !!”

Rock It Up Radio – OTIS

Category : REVIEWS


Darren Flower ( Rock It Up Radio , Former Stone River)
Best Albums: Otis “Eyes Of The Sun”The Kleejoss Band “Inception” / Uncle Sal “You Is not No Bluesman”.
Best Concerts: Marcus King , Ray Lamontagne , Rival Sons


get ready to ROCK! “The Best of 2017”

Category : REVIEWS

The Best of 2017: top albums, top live acts – the reviewers’ choice


Top Albums

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!

BluesMagazine: Review – OTIS Eyes of the Sun

Category : REVIEWS

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.

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

Website: OTIS