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I first came across Black Stone Cherry when I saw Velvet Revolver in Cardiff a couple of years back. Both My Friend and I really liked their performance and wanted to find out more about them as although were were familiar with the name we didn't know much of their music. We saw them In Bristol and got to meet them after the Gig. Last year I was waiting for the new album to come out as I really enjoyed their first two releases and expected another excellent album. They were formed in 2001 in Kentucky and consist of Chris Robertson - lead vocals, lead guitar, Ben Wells - rhythm guitar, backing vocals, Jon Lawhon - bass guitar, backing vocals & John Fred Young - drums, percussion, backing vocals.
**Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea**
This is their new album, It is their third release and features their usual mix of Hard Rock & Southern Rock. The Band supported Alter Bridge on their UK Tour and they are now embarking on their own tour for the album. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea was produced by
1.) White Trash Millionaire
This is a fantastic opener, It really showcases the sound of Black Stone Cherry, The track is a snarling Rock Anthem and is one of the hardest tracks on Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. The vocals from Chris Robertson are loud and gritty and the guitars are too. This is an excellent example of their musicianship with some crashing drums, aggressive bass hooks and vibrant guitar solos from Both Ben and Chris. Excellent opener.
2.) Killing Floor
This is another uptempo Heavy Rock track with catchy vocals, a catchy chorus and some excellent guitar melodies with a hard Metal sound. The guitar work really adds to the track with some great work from both Ben and Chris again. It's about when things are going against you and you feel that things just aren't in your favour. It has a dark metal like ending which gives the track another sound that works rather well.
3.) In My Blood
This track shows another side to the band which is also shown on their previous work, This is a fine Rock ballad which was their third single from the album. It's about the aftermath of a failed relationship where you can't let them go and can't get over them. It's a really excellent track which shows a tender side to the band. I love the way this one develops and there's some excellent guitar work that really tops off the track and takes it to the next level. Excellent stuff.
4.) Such a Shame
This is another vibrant up tempo Heavy Rock track with clear Metal elements. Chris' aggressive vocals are a particular highlight of the track as is the guitar melody that underpins the track. The track features Lzzy Hale from the band Halestorm. She provides excellent backing vocals and some excellent guitar as well. This is another excellent track which breaks down wonderfully and then erupts with a guitar and drum feast. Great stuff.
5.) Won't Let Go
This is one of the more acoustic moments on the album, Chris' vocals are expressive and laid back on this tale about looking back and looking forward at things that matter in life. It progresses with a Rocky feel with some excellent crunchy guitars and Stadium Rock like Vocals. This is the second of two tracks featuring Lzzy Hale from the band Halestorm. She features with backing vocals again which compliment the lead vocals from Chris.
6.) Blame it on the Boom, Boom.
There's more up tempo stuff here with more crunchy guitars and crashing drums, This is an excellent track which features some of the best guitar work on the album. Both guitarists are very capable indeed and play off each other so well as I witnessed when I saw them live. They make heavy rock which also had a great chorus which makes them so much more varied than some of their contemporaries. Another excellent track.
7.) Like I Roll
This track is about moving from City to City, It is about their life on Tour and reminds me a little of Lynyrd Skynyrd and they are big fans of them. There's again some excellent guitar work here and Chris leads with his vocals well again. This is one of the catchiest tracks on the album and I'm sure it will be one for crowd participation when they perform the song live due to it's infectious chorus.
8.) Can't You See
This is an excellent track which really showcases their musical ability. It starts gently and then a dark sound kicks in with some excellent guitar work and the drums and bass really combine well together to create a perfect soundstage. The guitars are a highlight of this great track with some unexpected sounds and a lovely progression that is topped off with some fine solo work.
9.) Let Me See You Shake
This is an excellent track which has a fabulous melody and some snarling guitars which really take the track to another level. It's one of the best tracks on the album and has such a catchy feel. I love the way it develops too and the vocals combined with the music really works well. It's topped off with some superb guitar work from both Chris and Ben and has so many good elements.
This is another slow southern rock ballad, It features Chris on lead vocals as usual and has the same style of the ballads on the previous two albums, it progresses really well and has an excellent feel. Chris' vocals are suitably emotive on this track showcasing the range in his voice. It's another excellent ballad and a nice change from much of the album's more aggressive Hard Rock.
This changes the pace with perhaps the heaviest track on the album, It's incredibly catchy and is a real toe tapper. The vocals are strong and the guitar work is excellent. I like the way the track builds and it's a further example of the variety of the band and just how much they can do in terms of variety. An excellent track for several reasons.
12.) All I'm Dreamin Of
This ends the album on a Southern Rock/Country note. It's a heartfelt ballad about wanting things to better and life to be about the important things. It's a lovely change of pace and showcases the songwriting ability of the band as well as their musicianship, There's clearly some elements taken from Lynyrd Skynyrd here especially with some of the guitar parts. An excellent track.
This is another excellent album from Black Stone Cherry and helps their back catalogue with another very good album in their body of work. There's obvious nods to Lynyrd Skynyrd for the Southern Rock aspect here but there are plenty of nods to the Metal genre with some excellent uptempo Heavy stuff which really combines well with the slower moments to create an excellent album which will have varied appeal. If you like them then check out this album as it's more of their best.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 White Trash Millionaire
2 Killing Floor
3 In My Blood
4 Such A Shame
5 Won't Let Go
6 Blame It On The Boom Boom
7 Like I Roll
8 Can't You See
9 Let Me See You Shake
12 All I'm Dreamin' Of
13 Staring At The Mirror
14 Fade Away
15 Die For You