Nick Evans Mowery – Owners and Pickers
Tangent Boy Productions
8 songs – 25 minutes
Nick Evans Mowery is a singer/songwriter/producer living just outside of Nashville, TN. Since 2004, he has produced 16 albums and released a number of singles. His music has also appeared in a number of television shows and movie soundtracks since 2010. If you haven’t come across Evans Mowery previously, Owners and Pickers is a short but highly enjoyable introduction to his music as well as testament to his many talents.
In addition to writing all eight songs, Evans Mowery also performed all the music and vocals himself, as well as recording, mixing and mastering the album. On the evidence herein, he would make a good living at playing only drums, guitar, keys or bass. The fact that he plays them all to such a high standard shows there is no justice in this world.
Opening with the ZZ Top/George Thorogood-esque stomp of “Tired Ole Man Blues”, Evans Mowery comes roaring out of the blocks with a gloriously distorted guitar tone and an irresistible drum pattern, which leads nicely into the Louisiana-flavoured love song, “My Whole World”, which would not sound out of place on a Delbert McClinton album. The variation in tone and timbre is indicative the broad musical palette Evans Mowery embraces.
Evans Mowery is an excellent singer with a singular turn in lyrical hooks, addressing such esoteric subjects as how to make the perfect sandwich in “Fried Bologna Sammich” or the difference between guitar “owners” and guitar “pickers” on the title track. “Owners and Pickers” also contains some magnificently intimidating guitar soloing in a manner befitting a resident of Tennessee.
“Sing Your Song” sounds like The Stray Cats essaying some West Coast swing, while “C’mon Now” successfully treads a fine line between soul and rock. “Walk A Thin Line” sounds like it could have been performed by an 1970s English rock band, such as Humble Pie or Cockney Rebel. Evans Mowery’s vocal even has a hint of Steve Harley on this track.
The closing track, “Reindeer Fly” features more fleet-fingered guitar playing and another off-kilter (and entertaining) lyric in perhaps the least Christmasy Christmas song of all time.
There is much to enjoy in Owners and Pickers, particularly if you enjoy well-written and well-played modern blues and blues-influenced songs with some top class guitar playing.