The Milk Men feature heavily in the new autumn issue of Fireworks Magazine, with a 3-page feature and a song on the cover mount CD.
In the last few years there has been a New Wave of British Blues (NWOBB). Firstly, there are the young contenders coming straight out of the starting gate, then there are the slightly older ones, the generation that grew up with parents encouraging them to play like their own heroes, and thus passing on their English blues DNA. The Milk Men fall into this latter category.
‘Gold Top’ has a truly genuine blues sound that is evocative of the 60s and 70s. ‘Shoot The Lights’ is a humdinging opener in the style of Dr Feelgood, the album them moving on to ‘Rag’n’Bone Lady’; with its catchy riff and Rod Stewart growl. The latter would have charted in the early 70s. Bass player Lloyd wrote ‘This Is The Last Time’ with his father, guitarist Mick Green.
‘The `Operator’ is a vivacious piece of 60s swing, the pace then shifting a bit for ‘Give Me A Reason’ which has a real Cream, Robin Trower, Eric Clapton vibe and oozes feel out of every chord. Unfortunately I don’t have the sleeve notes or blurb with this album , so I can’t tell you who the wonderful female vocals are gere, but they add authenticity to the fun ‘Tambourine’. We’re back into Clapton territory with ‘Taking Control’ and then things move into real US A Rhythm and Blues territory for the superlative cover of ‘Give Me Back My Wig’.
‘Trouble’ is a rocker and ‘Gimme Some Blues’ pretty much does what it says on the tin, what with it having a real hooky chorus that’s difficult to get out of your head, and that takes us to a ‘lighter-waving’ finish with the ballad ‘Hard Woman To Love’. It wouldn’t be out of place on a Rolling Stones or Quireboys album, and the additional female vocal is stunning and a joy; we don’t hear enough female backing vocals anymore and it adds depth to the songs.
‘Gold Top’ is magnificent and it’s perfect if you are a fan of English Blues – the sound and songs are authentic. There is not a track on here that’s not single worthy and as each one played I thought ‘this is my favourite’ .
If this album had come out in 1972 it would be a classic.
Take from the prize herds of Pirates and Mustangs, Jamie Smy, vocalist, Mike Roberts, drummer and Lloyd Green on bass, stirred through with Adam Norsworthy, gunslinger, allow to settle, and The Milk Men have a GOLD TOP, their second release, to deliver right o your door.
Jamie’s in fine gritty voice for the opener ‘Shoot The Lights’ as the band go into full rock mode. ‘Rag’n’Bone Lady’ pulses out from the rhythm section, Jamie finds a ZZ Top grove, for an AC/DC style to track into, with Adam’s guitar cutting through the heavy beat, impulsive and infectious, hooking you in from the first few bars.
Skip on and call ‘The Operator’ for a bouncy R’n’B song with Adam’s guitar coming to the fore, and Jamie on the line, ticking the box that has the Feelgood label.
The beautiful, slow soulful blues of ‘Give Me A Reason’ ebbs on a current of Lloyd and Mike’s bass and drum, Jamie creates the mood, Adam drifts across the flow bringing flecks of light to the dark cool water. Superb.
The bright shaking ‘Tambourine’ , revealed in the back of a limo, vies with a mellow ‘Taking Control’ , a gentler respite, before the mayhem of the wonderfully crazy ‘Give Me Back My Wig’. Brushed off to reveal a harmonica hidden inside, Adam gets the rock’n’roll vibe going on his guitar. It’s a cracking little classic in the high-heeled sneakers mode.
There is one track on this album almost guaranteed to have everybody joining in, and gets the band into a bucket-full of ‘Trouble’ - full of inviting lyrics; a wonderful song to lose yourself in, as Jamie calls the shots.
This is one Gold Top I’m happy to take the lid off and taste the glorious contents. There is so much to enjoy about this album, a mix of home-produced and classic R’n’B and, as you can guess, I particularly like ‘Give Me A Reason’ and ‘Trouble’….maybe one leads directly to the other?!
A ‘Hard Woman To Love’ is the last track on this release with Adam and Jamie soloing in before the band joins in to electrify it; the gruff, cheese-grater vocals sitting nicely with some lovely guitar. The track builds , with additional chorus lines coming from an unidentified female vocalist, but she adds a bit of magic to the curtain call.
I’m putting the note out on the doorstep, hoping for the Milk Men to drop by, and deliver my rich, tasty GOLD TOP.
Flagged as a British blues rock supergroup, The Milk Men comprises of members of British blues rock royalty The Pirates and The Mustangs. ‘Gold Top’ is the band’s second release and confirms their place as band right on top of their game.
Consummate musicianship and the gravelly, distinct vocals of Jamie Smy serve to remind us all of where the music we love comes from. Unapologetically retro and “steeped in the vibes of classic British blues rock from the seventies” these ten original and one cover songs nonetheless have an energy and sense of fun to which many of this band’s younger brethren should pay some attention.
It is perhaps inevitable that comparisons with other musicians are made while listening to this – vocally, early Rod Stewart and Paul Rogers, Dr Feelgood (‘The Operator’ and the cover of ‘Give Me Back My Wig’), Rory Gallagher, Spencer Davis (without the keyboards) and even the Swinging Blue Jeans (on ‘Trouble’) but The Milk Men have a sound of their own, albeit familiar and rooted in blues rock history.
From the opening rocking boogie of ‘Shoot The Lights’ through the stomping blues rocker ‘Tambourine’ to the final ballad ‘Hard Woman To Love’ (Bad Company-style acoustic start, building as it does) this album is a pleasure (and if I can’t recall which song I am reminded of by the guitar and vocal interplay on ‘Gimme Some Blues’ anytime soon, I may go nuts!)
Well here goes, my first review for Framemusic and what an album to start with, doesn’t get much better than the latest and second release by The Milk Men – Gold Top (awesome title). Which is a brilliant follow up to Full Phat and like that did, it certainly shows that these guys know what they want to achieve and really enjoy doing just that.
For someone who’s a huge fan on the late great Rory Gallagher and that brill Texas trio ZZ Top this album was hugely enjoyable as it has the feel of both bands from the beginning to end.
Track 1 – Shoot The Lights, starts things of with a immensely catchy groove which has echos of Dr Feelgood, the lead break with the title repeating over it is a magical change of rhythm to then go back to the highly infectious groove to finish off.
Track 2 – Rag ‘n’ Bone Lady, continues on with a similar foot tapping beat with some very cool bass licks to start it off.
Track 3 – This Is The Last Time, flows along with some great drum break from Mike, co written by Lloyd’s father Mick Green and heavily features his style.
Track 4 – The Operator, reminds me very much of the fifties rock ‘n’ roll styles of Little Richard, Fats Domino and Big Bopper
Track 5 – Give Me A Reason, is a great bit of blues shuffle and a nice mid album slow down.
Track 6 – Tambourine, has a opening riff very much Rory Gallagher in style and does a great job of kicking things up a gear. With some awesome backing vocals by Sam White
Track 7 – Taking Control, certainly does that, another great blues shuffle, again with a Rory Gallagher feel to it
Track 8 – Give Me Back My Wig, a great cover of the Hound Dog Tayor song is played with great enthusiasm and with adding the harmonica they give it a slightly different feel.
Track 9 – Trouble, another highly infectious number with influences of just about everyone in blues history.
Track 10 – Gimme Some Blues, is another that certainly lives up to it’s title, which I think anybody would find it impossible to not tap or nod along too.
Track 11 – Hard Woman Love, finishes thing of in great style with acoustic guitar and again featuring Sam White on backing vocals. Who really gives it her all, towards the end with that gospel style.
To finish off this review, I can definitely say this album will stay in my top play list for a very very very long time. One thing is for certain as long as these guys continue to make music, the blues is in safe hands so I highly recommend that you buy this album.
Top marks to Mike, Jamie, Adam and Lloyd, on this album they have truly “DELIVERED”
Fans of Rory Gallagher pay attention! This second album by the British band The Milk Men could be a pleasant surprise for you. This band consists of members of bands from The Mustangs and The Pirates, namely Jamie Smy (vocals), Adam Norsworthy (guitar), Lloyd Green (bass) and Mike Roberts (drums). Nice to mention is the fact that Lloyd Green is the son of the legendary Pirates guitarist Mick Green.
The band kicks off the album strongly with the hard blues rock boogie Shoot The Lights. A boogie of which Rory Gallagher would smile approvingly. The voice of Jamie Smy in this song is very much like that of Rory. Rag 'n' Bone Lady starts with thumping drums and bass and then becomes groovy blues rock in which the sound of ZZ Top seems to be processed. The raw vocals of Smy and the flaming guitar work of Norsworthy stand out here.
In the mid-tempo track This Is The Last Time you can find all kinds of influences such as The Faces / Black Crowes and even The Cult (the intro!). I even dare to add some hit potential to this song. The Operator is a funky blues rock song. Relaxing swinging a la "Call Me The Breeze" by J.J. Cale. In the ballad Give Me A Reason the vocals of Smy stand out. He sounds here as Rod Stewart in his Faces period. The warm jazzy guitar sounds of Norsworthy also stand out. The Rory Gallagher sound is back in the languid groovy blues rocker Tambourine with a sultry slide in the lead. The Hound Dog Taylor classic Gimme Back My Wig gets a fiery rocking performance. Rocking in the best Prisoners / Dr. Feelgood tradition.The funky boogie Gimme Some Blues has a swampy sound with occasionally popping folky elements. The album is closed in an impressive way with the ballad Hard Woman To Love. A number in the best Faces / Rod Stewart tradition.
The Milk Men's brilliant new album, Gold Top, has hit number 2 on the iTunes Blues Chart, alongside legends such as The Rolling Stones, Van Morrison and Muddy Waters.
The British blues rock ‘supergroup’ The Milk Men release their brand new album GOLD TOP on Friday March 2nd. The album follows the band’s critically-acclaimed 2016 debut FULL PHAT. The Milk Men have been called a Blues Rock ‘supergroup’ as the band comprises of members from various renowned UK blues bands including the Mustangs and UK legends The Pirates.
GOLD TOP has 11 tracks, including 10 originals, and a storming cover of Hound Dog Taylor’s ‘Give Me Back My Wig’. One of the originals, ‘This Is The Last Time’ was co-written by bassist Lloyd Green and his father, the legendary guitarist Mick Green. Among the originals are the ferocious ‘Shoot The Lights’, the catchy swing of ‘This Is The Last Time’ and the smoky epic blues of ‘Give Me A Reason’.
Guitarist Adam says: “This album has a real identity..it is steeped in the vibe of classic British rock from the 70s, and it has a consistency and atmosphere that we can’t wait to play live on the road”. The Milk Men will be playing various festivals and venues throughout the UK in 2018, and you can visit their website for more details on live shows.
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