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The Brew - 'Control' http://ns2.rocktopiarecords.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/78/2e/03/the-brew-control-35-1393365018.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     February 25, 2014    
 
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I really like his album! You will, too.

It takes a lot of guts for a band five releases into their career and with considerable success on the live circuit in Europe, to take a step back and really take a look at what they're about. Well that's exactly what Classic Rock, Heavy Blues three-piece The Brew have done with 'Control', deciding that to capture the live energy and feel they produce on stage, they had to record their new album completely live in the studio, to the point where in places it is possible to hear the effects pedals being stamped on to make guitars howl, scream and sting. Boy does it work - and then some! The band's previous studio effort, 'The Third Floor' from 2011 was a serious statement, surging with energy and reeking of 70s authenticity. However only when I heard the 2012 album 'Live In Europe', did I realise exactly what The Brew (or The Brew UK as they seem to have been known for a short time over the past few years - thankfully we're back to simply The Brew now) were capable of.

Well hats off, ring the bells, and shout from the rooftops, for what Jason Barwick (vocals/guitars), Tim Smith (bass/vocals) and Kurt Smith (drums) have frothingly crafted here, positively bulges with forceful, irresistible energy and is one of the best 70s inspired Classic Rock albums a UK act has delivered for many a year. Yes, we're talking seriously, seriously (I could add another seriously, but you're with me now) potent stuff here. However it isn't all just piss and vinegar, or passion over skill, or substance over style; there's a real eye for detail, a variety between songs and the feel that even the more seat of the pants sections have been painstakingly worked through. Think The Answer on steroids (and I really like The Answer), a single guitar Thin Lizzy finally capturing their live prowess in the studio and you'll be in the right dirty, bluesy, yet heavy, refined and in our face ballpark. A stinging production from Toby Jepson (The Answer/Saxon) doesn't exactly hurt either.

The tracks all have titles like 'Rewind', 'Skip', 'Shuffle', 'Play' and 'Mute', however this isn't a concept about my old top-loader VCR which took ten people to close and only played three video cassettes and even then only sections of them on long-play. Rather the simple titles are used to illustrate wider issues, with relationships, the world around us and life in general commented on in an astute but non-finger wagging fashion.

You might get the impression that I quite like this album but you'd be wrong. I REALLY like his album! You will, too!

Steven Reid

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