12 songs time-56:20
Controlled chaos in the hands of the right people can be a glorious thing to behold. These are definitely the right people. The main perpetrators here are Mandy Lemons on raging vocals and Sturgis Nikides providing the guitars that come at you from all directions. Nick Dodson provides the bass and Mike “Drummerlife” Munn the drums and percussion. His busy cymbal work is refreshing. Other musicians contribute keyboards, saxophone, accordion and harmonica as needed. The music they present here is a concoction of rock, blues, R&B, roots, Memphis rock n’ soul, etc…All served up with attitude. Ten originals and tw0 covers are all given the Low Society once over.
Slide guitar “as slippery as deer guts on a door knob” lead into Mandy’s take charge guttural vocals, as you are rudely awakened by the joyful noise of “Crammed And Jammed”. This is a pummeling of the best kind. Koko Taylor’s “Voodoo Woman” is also spearheaded by raucous slide work. The vocal is urgent and over-the-top. Dr. Herman Green, who has played with B.B. King and Lionel Hampton, delivers some tasty saxophone. With Mandy’s brazen vocal delivery you get a picture in your head of her maniacally stalking the stage.
The dramatic reading of “Need Your Love” sounds like it could have come from the movie “Cabaret”. Rick Steff’s accordion lends a bit of “oom-pah-pah” atmosphere. Greasy Memphis funk is the stuff that “Son House Says” is made of. Organ chords washing under some gritty guitar supports the strutting vocal. The title track throttles the point home as slide guitar and piano battle it out. A slow and moody intro leads into “This Heart Of Mine”. Mandy pleads her case with a deeply soulful and heartfelt vocal performance.
Strugis Nikides’ slide gets all jumpy and melodic on the upbeat “Up In Your Grave”, although the lyrics are threatening. The band handles Memphis Minnie’s “Let Me Ride” as a “Sunday go to meeting” religious rant. It includes a male answer vocal and nifty piano and acoustic slide guitar. Shuffling snare drums move the down-on-my-luck “No Money Down”. Mandy gets righteous from her pulpit on the hard charging “You Got A Right”.
Our girl sounds possessed on the atmospheric “El Diablo”. The sole accompaniment here is acoustic guitar and spare percussion. Mandy repents on “Should’ve Known Better> Her vocal reeks of sincerity. Organ and saxophone are added to the stew.
After a listen you know you have experienced something very special and energizing. Mandy is the obvious vocal point, but when mixed with the manic slide guitars and rhythm section an unstoppable force is created. Nothing is held back here. Mandy’s voice and delivery are something to behold. It’s the tough girl vibe, but there is more at work here. The lyrics come from a real place. When Mandy leaves your CD player there is no question she was there.
Don’t take my word for it, pick this puppy up and make a believer out of yourself. You can thank me later.