Album & Single Reviews

Published on November 5th, 2017 | by Mike Ainscoe

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Jared James Nichols: Black Magic – album review

JARED JAMES NICHOLS

‘BLACK MAGIC’

Listenable Records

Hard edged blues rock, in a word (or two) – BLUES POWER

Or in an alternative two words – ‘Black Magic’. Jared James Nichols is a dude who’s certainly paid his dues. Having encountered the fizzing  presence of his trio supporting Saxon, Blue Oyster Cult, UFO and Scorpion Child over the last 12 months or so, there’s no denying he’s not putting in the work on the live circuit. Where it counts I guess.

On the  follow up to his debut ‘Old Glory & The Wild Revival’, he’s backed by Dennis Holm and Erik Sandin with a mission to hit hard, fast and with the sort of minimum of fuss that the punk classes of ’76 would have admired as only two of ten tracks cross the three minute barrier. Although they may nod their heads in approval at a running time that doesn’t break the half hour, it’s unlikely that they’d have been shaking a mane of hair with the guitar neck pointed skywards.

Like another blues rocking young gun, Aaron Keylock, Nichols runs the full gamut of hard and heavy rock with a blues spirit never far away. Decked out in sleeveless checked shirt, facial grimaces and the arched  back posture combining with the bumps and bruises of music deeply rooted in delta blues and seventies rock.

First song written for the album, ‘The Gun’ smoulders and broods and  there’s some fun with the talk box on ‘Don’t Be Scared’ as the blues rock core rubs shoulders with grand funk, southern rock and album opener  ‘Last Chance’ described as the hardest hitting song he’s ever written. Talking influences, ‘Got To Have You’ has a John Lee Hooker ‘Boom Boom’ vibe in its blues shuffle and ‘End Of Time’ echoes the sort of blues moan that Jay Buchanan brings to Rival Sons set against an epic riff.

Raw and unfiltered, ‘What Love’ didn’t  even making it past the demo stage, the old school boogie rhumba considered worthy enough in feel and fire not to have to recut. It speaks volumes for the fact that ‘Black Magic’ is about fuelling the fire and letting a visceral, authentic vibe flow through the veins.

Here’s a link to the Jared James Nichols page on Facebook

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About the Author

Mike's mellowed in his old age, discovering the delights of traditional folk and acoustic music and the constant stream of new music coming through his passion as a gig-goer, music photographer and writer. With favourite artists and favourite songs which change daily, even hourly, he adds another spoke to the Sonic Bandwagon wheel of fortune.



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