My partner Kaj and I have been doing this for 20+ years now: searching every internet portal we can find, contacting anyone we know, in an effort to source the very best blues/rock music we can from every part of the world. It has been our privilege to write about some incredible music that prior to the advent of the internet would have lain in relative obscurity in every nation on the earth. And, in these 20+ years, it has never failed to happen that just when I think I must surely have discovered and written about all the really great independent artists around, my mailbox will unexpectedly deliver me a truly outstanding recording. Today’s edition features a remarkable work “Blues Got My Back” from the Virginia based blues/rock artist Tom Euler.

Tom Euler is the bonafide triple threat that we always hope to find: great guitar skills, excellent original material, and way above average for the genre vocals. Euler delivers stellar work in each of these categories in his debut release. He is quite an accomplished guitarist, demonstrating a wide range of styles on the recording.  His guitar work is very energetic and in ways reminiscent of Gary Moore’s interpretation of the blues, though perhaps not quite as heavy. And, if I hear GM’s spirit in Euler’s work, you know there is plenty of both power and polish present. While you are attempting to say that 3 times, note also that Euler’s band is first rate and this has to be great act to hear live. The band features the tremendously solid rhythm section of Von Jose’ Roberts on bass and Michael Behlmar on drums, most wonderfully supported by Lucy Kilpatrick on keyboards. Hopefully,  this band will one day produce a live recording, even now I have begun salivating at the thought. Euler’s song writing skills are impressive and I would have to say that a debut release of all original material for any artist is a daring move. In Euler’s case this works very well indeed as the material is strong enough to carry the recording. Finally, his vocals are really top notch. We get a lot of ax slinger type recordings here from mega talented guitarists who have vocals that are at times painful to experience. Euler is a very strong vocalist, more tenor level than most but of suprisingly high quality. When you add all this together, you have a formula for an artist with a stratospheric upside. I have to believe that Tom Euler is going to at some point in his career become very marketable to the masses and I will certainly be looking for great things from him in the future.

I am very pleased to report also that favorites on this set are very difficult for me to choose, given that each track is upper level good. The songs demonstrate a very wide range of style with no drop in quality from one to the other. There are hard driving blues/rock songs like the title track and the instrumental “Tricky Business”, several more mid tempo blues numbers like “Played Your Part” and “Broken Soul”, which are certainly two of my favorite tracks on the set. Also included is a gospel selection “Forgive Me” which includes some very righteous keyboards and passionate vocals. Toward the end of the set list, you will run head long into “Tough Guy” which is another of those mid tempo, stinging guitar tracks which seem to me to be a great strength of Euler. The 10th and final song is a gentle acoustic number “Thought of You” which I suspect may be a very personal song from Euler’s life. Like the rest of the CD, it is quite lovely.

“Blues Got My Back” is available online via the band’s official website www.tomeuler.com . Be sure you visit and drop the band a note if you like what you hear, and I feel confident that you will. This recording comes with the Bluesrock.reviews highest recommendation , otherwise known as the “buy this CD even if you have to fish through your neighbor’s couch for change” seal of approval.

 

The Tunes:

1. Blues Got My Back
2  Bridge You Ain’t Burnt
3. Played Your Part
4. Rock N’ Roll These Days
5. Broken Soul
6. Forgive Me
7. Tricky Business
8. Tough Guy
9. More To Life
10. Thoughts Of You

The Players:

Tom Euler: Guitars and vocals
Michael Behlmar: Drums
Von Jose’ Roberts: Bass Guitar
Lucy Kilpatrick: Keyboards

Recording copyright 2019 Tom Euler Music

Review copyright 2019 Bluesrock.reviews.

 

Reviewer

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