Album Review: Supersonic Blues Machine – Voodoo Nation

Sitting in the garden on a warm summer’s evening, Voodoo Nation is the ideal accompaniment. An album that is so polished you could see your face in it, it still has enough about it to be enjoyable, getting that foot tapping and you singing along after a couple of listens.

Voodoo Nation features another fine array of guests to help flesh out the stellar work of current core of the band: producer/bass player Fabrizio Grossi (Steve Vai, Alice Cooper, George Clinton, Slash) and drummer Kenny Aronoff (John Mellencamp, Meat Loaf, Brandon Flowers, John Fogerty, Red Hot Chili Peppers) with British rocker Kris Barras now on board to replace singer-guitarist Lance Lopez. Those helping this time round include Charlie Starr (Blackberry Smoke), Eric Gales, Joe Louis Walker, Ana Popovic, Kirk Fletcher, King Solomon Hicks, Josh Smith & Sonny Landreth, and they all bring something a little special to the album.

Predominantly bedded in the blues, there is plenty more on offer. Barras is a rising star in the UK, a hard-working tour machine whose stock is now at special guest status for many events. His playing here is first class, eking out the blues-soaked guitar work that he has delivered with his own band for the past few years.

Barras brings his own UK style to the album, which compares favourably with the previous offerings of 2016’s West of Flushing, South of Frisco and the follow up of Californisoul. Whilst those two albums were certainly more Allman Brothers than Led Zeppelin, there’s no doubting Voodoo Nation brings a blend of music that works on every level.

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From the first few songs, “Money”, “Too Late” and “Coming Thru”, to the “finale All Our Love” with Charlie Starr bringing his own inimitable style, the best option is to grab a glass of your favourite tipple, lay back in your most comfortable chair and just enjoy an hour of indulgence. For whilst Voodoo Nation may reflect the way the world is currently heading, and how we are forced to live, musically it is as smooth as velvet, and a sure-fire way to forget the day to day grind, the lies of politicians and everything else that drives us down.

Stomp your feet to “Get it Done” with Josh Smith, marvel at the quality of Louisiana slide-god Sonny Landreth on the haunting “8 Ball Lucy” or dive deep into the eight-minute “Devil at the Door” which features some stunning work from guitar virtuoso Eric Gales, as well as shades of Zep’s “Dazed and Confused.”

Whatever you do, Voodoo Nation is an album that you should listen to at least once. The warning is clear though. One listen is likely to hook you and draw you in deep. This could become the soundtrack not just to your weekend but your week as well.

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Header image by Enzo Mazzeo

Voodoo Nation is out on June 24th

Check out all the bands we review in 2022 on our Spotify and YouTube playlists!

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