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The Blazers - Red Hot

Route Records


These Canadian blues-R&B-rockers shine best on upbeat tunes. The first two portend a well played good time. By the third track “I Love You, Eternally” the fake party sounds take away a little from the sound, but after repeated listening they start to work as an integral part of the party vibe. The catchy sax riff and concise and sharp guitar playing also add to the enjoyment. The guitar playing throughout, whether supplied by band member Josh Gordon or guest Jack De Keyzer is on point. It appears as straight blues, rock, Chuck Berry-ish or with some twiddling ala Van Halen. Jack also provides the crystal clear production on this disc. Vocalist Pete Cohan is in possession of a pleasing set of blues-rock pipes.

The bands forte’ is funky-blues-R&B with a rocker’s temperament. They lead off with a funky R&B-blues in the form of “Flavour Of The Year”. The heavy rocker “Coming Home” owes much to Bachman-Turner Overdrive as it follows their MO of little substance in the pantheon of “see my baby soon” songs. The band ably establishes their blues cred on the slow blues of “Never Gonna Cry Again”. Al Lerman adds fine amplified harmonica playing to increase the blues vibe. Elsewhere on the record he supplies able sax as well. Blues-rocker “Blind-Sided” features biting guitar work, probably from guest De Keyser. Blue-eyed easy-rolling soul is done up in “My Weather”, ably assisted by Al Lerman’s sax chops and the organ of Dave McMorrow. A nod is given to The Rolling Stones via the “ew-ew” vocal backing and maracas at the end of “Wake Up”. The guitar solo on “I’m Standing Here” could have been lifted from an Allman Bros.’ record, meant here as a compliment.

Perfection isn’t achieved here, but when is it? The musicianship here can’t be faulted. Their influences, obvious or otherwise, are put to good use. Some lyrics tend to be run-of-the-mill and there is some need for attention to stronger song structure. Flaws aside, these guys seem to be headed in the right direction. They’re not red hot as the title implies, but the engine is well stoked.

Reviewer Greg “Bluesdog” Szalony is from the New Jersey Delta. He is the proprietor of Bluesdog’s Doghouse at

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