Low Society Sanctified
In Mandy Lemons Low Society process a vocalist with the style of many of the great soul and blues singers of the past. And Sturgis Nikides a tattoo guitar slinger with attitude and style.
When I saw this band play on Beale street they played a blistering set of low down dirty delta blues. Well this album sees them mellow just a little bit but still keeping their foot on the gas.
From the opening bars of angel from Montgomery you know this third album from Low Society is going to be a great album. The new album is made up of ten tracks and two covers and eight Nikides/Lemons originals.
With a new drummer in Bart De Bruecker and a new bass player in Jacky Verstraeten. This is a more mellow band less rocky blues than their second album you can’t keep a good woman down, but with equally good quality songs.
As I say the album start with one of the two covers original done by Bonnie Raitt Angel from Montgomery. Mandy Lemons vocals are so soulful and a joy to listen too.
Raccoon song with the how how how reframe is a great get down and boogie song. The Freeze a slow burning blues song with great playing from Sturgis Nikides one of the best unsung blues guitarists of our time. Sanctified follows a classic Memphis/Texas blues you can taste and feel Beale street oozing out of this one.
River of tears a beautiful soulful song you could imagine Etta James or Sam Cooke would have covered and it selling by the bucket. Even if you can hear the influence of I’d rather go blind in the song.
Nina all 7.26 minutes is a song which could sit beside gold dust woman and the chain on rumours. The playing on this is a joy and Mandy’s vocals just carry the song along.
Drowning blues gets the tempo lifted a bit with Sturgis Nikides putting in a very good vocal on this, along with some great guitar playing that shows what an excellent blues man he is.
New York city boy not your typical blues song, but still excellent and Mandy’s vocals make this song.
Here comes the flood a solid beat and another fine performance from Mandy you can hear Marianne faithfully running through this one. This would draw you in to any bar and keep you there.
Finally, a cover of I’d rather go blind. You would think what could be done to this song that hasn’t been done. But somehow Mandy Lemons pours out a little bit more emotion and this version would stand tall among the many classic versions that we know and love.
So, all in all Sanctified find Low Society sounding a more mature band and producing a excellent third album. A hidden secret of Beale street this band needs to be heard by the world I for one hope that happens.
Peter Stock 2017
Peter Stock 2017