Toledo, Ohio is home to rockin' blues woman Laurie Swyers. This debut release by the singer-guitarist-and harmonica player is excitingly and explicitly her own songs. The compositions speak of contemporary themes and relationships; and with her multi-instrumental approach she wows audiences much like this biscuit will do you.
Laurie's support on this effort comes from a large studio cast including: Guitarists Dave Oaks and Joe Catarino; drummers Brian Peterson, Dario Insenga, Mike Hayes, and PeeWee Armor; bassist and classical guitarist Dave Mezardjian, bassist John Majiciewski, and vocalists Mary Dick and Sandy Reed. Roosevelt Hatcher provides the sax, and Joel Hazard and Peter Bishop jump in on the keyboards. Hazard, too, pumps in additional bass work.
Look to a strong mix of Chicago stylings and an ample dose of classic rock content in Swyers' blues mix. There is a sultry feel from the start with the opener "If Love's So Good", and the incessant mojo groove of "Magic Charm" will get your behind movin'. Great guitar lines meld into the five-minute "Outside Looking In" with its haunting harp lines and brilliant vocal content. Other striking cuts include the shufflin "Sweet Tooth", the prophetic "Trouble In Paradise", the funky "Urban Blues", and the sax-led, knockout "Blue Planet".
Throw it down with some Midwest stuff guaranteed to please. progressive blues people. Laurie's writing, her eloquent vocal phrasings, and instrumental arrangement fill all voids. Laurie Swyers gives ya thoughtful lyricism, artful constructions, and downright good rockin' blues!
Send $15 checks or M.O.'s to: Laurie Swyers; 2311 Waterworks; Toledo, Ohio 43609
This review is copyright © 2001 by Mark A. Cole, and Blues On Stage at: www.mnblues.com, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.