Monday, March 19, 2018
GIK Acoustics - Europe
GIK Acoustics - Europe
The Moshville Times

Review: Steve Hill – Solo Recordings: Volume 3

Look at any bio you can find of Steve Hill and there’s no doubt he’s led a busy and productive life. Solo Recordings: Volume 3 does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s Steve Hill performing a set of songs on his own, playing each instrument exactly how he sees fit for the song.

However, there’s a twist in the formula. He’s a one-man band. Operating hi-hats, snare and bass drum with his feet, guitar complete with bass notes originating from three guitar strings fed through an Octaver guitar pedal hooked up to a bass amp. The guitar also has a drumstick grafted to the headstock for that extra bit of percussion. And on top of all of that, he’s singing the lyrics. So score one for talent and skill.

Having toured with some of the best blues names in the business, it’s only fair that he’s more than qualified to create some of the best blues sounds to sit amongst them. Had you not been told this was all because of one man doing it all at once, you’d think it was an incredibly tight three or four-piece blues act.

However, by using this formula, Hill gets an edge over everyone else to create music to the exact minutiae he wants. It makes it that much more of a tight performance. With his gravel-spitting, husky voice, blues is the perfect backdrop for it and the nine original songs are all fighting for position to be the highlight of the album. Alongside that, he’s lovingly covered a handful of blues staples such as “A Rollin’ Stone” and “Stop Breaking Down”.

The stomping opener of “Damned” acts as a brilliant introduction to the album and indeed, if it’s your first time hearing Steve Hill, he proves within seconds, he’s the real deal. Like Alan Nimmo or Joanne Shaw Taylor, he doesn’t just play blues; he feels it. It speaks not to your ears or your brain but your soul. Whilst the album has its raucous moments like that and “Can’t Take it With You” among others, the softer side such as “Slowly Slipping Away” and “Emily” proves Hill knows when to drop a gear. The latter, whilst being acoustic-driven still feels light-hearted with its funky tones and wastes no time in making its presence known.

Recorded live in a studio, Hill proves his solo incarnation isn’t just for an on-stage gimmick and instead, he’s made a record which not only grabs your attention but keeps it. It makes me want to track down Volume 1 and 2 and if you can, catch him on tour with Wishbone Ash (now there’s a value for money ticket) later this month.

  • Wednesday     18-Oct-17        Dorking Halls, Dorking
  • Thursday         19-Oct-17        O2 Academy Islington, London
  • Friday              20-Oct-17        The Coliseum Theatre Aberdare
  • Saturday          21-Oct-17        Cheese & Grain, Frome
  • Sunday             22-Oct-17        The Arts Centre, Swindon
  • Tuesday           24-Oct-17        Ropetackle Arts Centre, Shoreham-By-Sea
  • Wednesday     25-Oct-17        The Brook, Southampton
  • Thursday         26-Oct-17        Tivoli Theatre, Wimborne
  • Friday              27-Oct-17        The Hub, Plymouth
  • Saturday          28-Oct-17        The Railway, Ipswich
  • Sunday             29-Oct-17        King Edward VII Memorial Hall, Newmarket
  • Tuesday           31-Oct-17        Princess Theatre, Hunstanton
  • Thursday         02-Nov-17       Floral Pavilion Theatre, New Brighton, Wirral
  • Friday              03-Nov-17       The Tivoli, Buckley
  • Saturday          04-Nov-17       Whitby Pavilion Theatre, Whitby
  • Sunday             05-Nov-17       The Lowry       Manchester
  • Tuesday           07-Nov-17       The Flowerpot, Derby
  • Wednesday     08-Nov-17       The Irish Centre, Leeds
  • Thursday         09-Nov-17       Bootleggers, Kendal
  • Friday              10-Nov-17       The Jam House, Edinburgh
  • Saturday          11-Nov-17       The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen
  • Sunday             12-Nov-17       The Ferry, Glasgow
  • Tuesday           14-Nov-17       Riverside Lodge, Morpeth
  • Wednesday     15-Nov-17       ARC, Stockton-on-Tees
  • Thursday         16-Nov-17       The Layton, Blackpool
  • Friday              17-Nov-17       The Picturedrome, Holmfirth
  • Saturday          18-Nov-17       ASHCON, Clitheroe

Header image by Szymon Góralczyk

Solo Recordings: Volume 3 is released on 6th October

Steve Hill: official | facebook | twitter | instragram | bandcamp

About The Author


Described as a gig junkie, can be seen at anything from the Quireboys to Black Label Society and everything in between.

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