8 tracks/33 minutes
Greek blues band The Lazytrains recently released this self-titled album, mixing blues, gospel, swing, R&B and a little pop. The band represented Greece in the 2022 European Blues Union Challenge June 4th in Malmo, Sweden. After hearing this album and watching them online, I was quite impressed. All music was written and arranged by the band.
Maria Ioannidou handles vocals, Peter Koutroubis is on guitars, mandolin, and keyboard, Lefteris Katsas is on electric bass and Eleni Fiseki plays drums & percussion. Also featured are Dionysis Kokolis (trumpet on track 2), Nikiforos Ioannidis (electric piano & Hammond Organ on tracks 4, 5 and 8), Nikos Lambrou (washboard on track 6) and Orestis Tsikouris (harmonica on track 8)
“I Don’t Need No Money” opens the album. It’s a slick blues with haunting vocals, a slick groove and good guitar work. “Tell Me Lover” is another cool cut with seductive vocals and a driving beat. There’s a nice guitar and trumpet solo that are well done, too. Next is the solemn starting “Who’s Gonna Love You Tonight?” After the intro the song moves into a midtempo romp with Ioannidou singing dreamily. A tasteful guitar solo is also featured. “Liar” is up next, a cut with some Latin influences. The guitar solo and organ support are well done.
“Will You Be” follows. More seductive vocals by Ioannidou, some cool guitar and a keyboard solos make this one special. They go acoustic with “Ain’t This Kind of Woman,” a rootsy cut with washboard and other percussion that has a great, down home vibe. This and the last track were recorded live. “I Feel Blue” finished up the record, another somber and down tempo torch song for Ioannidou to shine in. Her breathy vocals and pacing are nicely done and the organ and other support are solid. We get a harp solo and guitar solo that lead into a near orgasmic conclusion to the cut.
This is a good little initial album by this Greek blues band. Lots of down tempo and breathy stuff was offered up; I was hoping they would let one go and give up a hot, really up tempo number to enjoy. Despite that, this is a fine album and I look forward to hearing more from the Lazytrains!