Hurricane Dave and the Storm Chasers – Blooze Blowdown
Smoke Tone Records
12 tracks/72 minutes
Hurricane Dave and his Stormchasers are an eclectic band. Vocally, David Biondo is way out there. The musicians are talented and the guys performing are tight and appear to be having a great time. Biondo is a New Jersey native who moved to Colorado in 1994. They self describe their style of blues as from the “Delta, Psychedelic Gospel, Jump, NY Style Jazzy, New Orleans Style, Chicago… Rootsy;” It’s all that and more.
David Biondo leads the charge here and plays the harps, acoustic guitar, lap steel, and handles vocals. Wayne Hammerstadt plays electric guitars. Dwight Thompson is on the bass, Dewey Steele is on drums and Bryant Jones is on keyboards. Betsey Ruckard backs David on vocals. Eleven original tracks and a cover are included here.
Hurricane Dave Biondo’s vocals remind me of a wild man version the Door’s keyboard player Ray Manzarek. He growls and songs with reckless abandon. The opener “Tarzan and Jane” feature him in a crazy number with great keyboard backing and overall band support. He follows that with a story about “Claire – Starbright” where he narrates a dark tale about a murdered woman in a song that is a narration of film noir. Interesting, to say the least. The title track then follows. Biondo sings and blows a little harp with frenetic passion. The guitar solo work is well done. It’s another wild ride.
“I Want To Get to Heaven, I Never Admit Defeat” is another dark tale with ethereal, creepy backing. Crazy stuff done in a quite interesting manner. Next is “Rat Mobile,” another cut with narration, but this time about an old open wheeled rag top unpainted hot rod he calls the Rat Mobile. The tinkling of the piano keys and guitar soloing are cool. The cover “Riders on the Storm” next, done fairly straight up but with the sound and feel of Manzarek doing hte lead vocals. The keys, guitar and vocals deliver that classic psychedelic rock sound.
“Damn That Ticket – Ticket to the Blues” features more gutsy vocals and storytelling. Here we have Biondi giving us an Atlantic City based tale of fighting a traffic ticket with dirty harp, nice piano and big guitar sounds. Following that is “Universe Passes By – All I Do Is Fly.” Again Biondo tells us another story as he blows a little harp and throws in some lap steel as the piano backs him. “Down at the Thunderbird” is a seamy and steamy cut with Biondo again narrating his story of adventures at a club. Jazzy, dark and again he tells us quite the tale.
“Dave’s Blues” is a slow and gritty blues with harp, guitar and piano giving us a greasy good time as Dave sings his blues. “My Boat’s Got a Hole In It” follows with Biondo again singing and storytelling with crazed passion. Betsy Ruckhard backs Biondo on vocals. They conclude with “On Down the River” with a resonator and harp providing accompaniment to Dave’s story.
It’s wild. The stories and vocals are hairy and big. It’s frenetic and hypnotic; certainly not for the faint of heart. If you want something different, and I mean REALLY different, then pick this one up. It’s a wold and crazy ride!