Hundreds of Influences = Tons of Potential
While the most common blues names seem to start with “Blind” or “Sonny” or “Junior,” one name you will not find duplicated is Spiros Soukis. His music is original as he fuses the borders of past and modern blues. When I first gave this album a listen I thought ofRory Gallagher’s Blue Day for the Blues compilation. There may be only six songs on the disc, but the styles vary from sixties’ blues revival to futuristic space jams. Soukis’ high energy and versatility with the strings makes him a dangerous man. These songs show a depth of a musician who has studied and honed his craft well.
With six songs on the disc I figured that I’ll take the time to tell you a little about each song. “She Feels So Good” is the most typical modern electric blues song on the album. It’s catchy, has a strong rhythmic pulse, and clean tasty guitar work. Now the second song makes me think that Soukis has some harder roots. “Urban Embrace” reminds me of a Motorhead tune without the distortion or Lemmy. The simple riff and straightforward lyrics that open up the song for the scorching guitar solo let you see another side of this musician. It is not out of place on this album at all, but just shows the variety and amount of musicians that have influenced Soukis. And on that topic, don’t get scared away by the mention of Lemmy because then Spiros goes acoustic and gets as gentle as Dave Van Ronk on “Looking Out My Window.” It reminds me Gallagher’s version of “As the Crow Flies.”
The next two tracks follow a bit of the Joe Bonamassa stylings in the modern electric blues songs. “Come Into My Life” propels ahead with a steady beat that Soukis sings with his six strings. Then the band gets a little frisky as they bring a Latin-flavored beat to “Precious Love.” Again this shows how much complexity is in this music. The closing song is the instrumental track “Lovebourne,” which sounds like it could have been born on a night after hanging out with Jeff Beck. It is clean, quiet, and surreal. An atmospheric way to end an album with so many varied influences in one talented musician.
First and foremost Spiros Soukis is a very well-versed and learned musician.Loveborne Blues appears to be just a tip of the iceberg of what he is capable of creating. I feel like this album is one piece to a 500-piece puzzle that we need years to put together. Some musicians are worth that investment. With the right guidance and direction he could forge a great career for himself. Soukis has put the time into his craft, now it’s our time to make it payoff and listen to what he has to say.
Kyle M. Palarino is a contributing editor at BluesWax.