Review

SPIRITUAL BEGGARS Earth Blues

Album · 2013 · Hard Rock
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5/5 ·
Kev Rowland
There is just no way that music like this should exist in 2013. I mean, if this had come out forty years ago there would have been some critics saying that it was looking backwards instead of forwards as it mixes Black Sabbath with Deep Purple, Black Widow, Blue Cheer, Free, Atomic Rooster and Uriah Heep in a celebration of music where keyboards meant a Hammond Organ on overdrive that is permanently linked to either the bass or the guitar to provide an additional heaviness to the overall sound. For those who have never had the joy of hearing Sprititual Beggars before, it may come as a surprise to unvcover the line-up behind this classic rock, melodic stoner/doom band. This is the same line-up as the last album, namely bandleader Michael Amott (Arch Enemy, ex Carcass) on guitars, Ludwig Witt (Grand Magus, ex Firebird) on drums, Per Wiberg (ex Opeth) on keyboards, Sharlee D’Angelo (Arch Enemy, Witchery) on bass and Apollo Papathanasio (ex Firewind) on vocals. Overall this is the group’s 8th album and has been released just in time to celebrate their 20th anniversary.

Recorded mostly in a live situation, here is an album where evryone if feeding off each other as if it is an almighty jam. There is a vitality and essence that is often missing from studio albums, and a sense of everyone having an incredible blast as if the whole album was recorded with a smile on everyone’s face. Having come across these guys before I was smiling before the first note as I thought I knew what to expect, but by the end of the album I was grinning like a loon (the alcohol may have helped, admittedly), and each time I have played it since I have found myself back in the Seventies when I started discovering this style of music. It starts strong, and just keeps getting better. It just doesn’t get any better than this. As Amott said, “To me, it sounds like five musicians getting together in a room and making some hard rocking music and having a tremendous amount of fun doing so. It’s just a real pure band sound on the album. No samples, no triggers or other modern day studio trickery were used. We avoided making it perfect, sucking the soul out of things. Only the spirit and emotion of the song was important”. Essential. www.insideout.de
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