Samantha Fish - Wild Heart
American blues guitarist, Samantha Fish comes back with her fourth record Wild Heart. Let me tell you now, if you’re a fan of that southern style of blues, you’ll want this album in your collection. I first took notice of this incredible talent a couple of years ago when I got the Ruf Records live album Girls with Guitars Live CD/DVD where she performed with the equally talented Dani Wilde & Victoria Smith. Great technique mixed with well structured songs and fun riffs. Her songs are always fun to listen to. She also has a warm presence to her, all her music is very inviting. To be honest I’d probably be recommending her music to non-blues fans, and I’d bet you they’d find something to enjoy.
The first thing you’ll hear on the record is the old style blues twang of the song Road Runner, which to be honest, really sets the tone of this album. The riffs are consistent and the solos are pretty standard, these are very old style tunes. In fact this whole album has that feeling of BB or Muddy. The guitar has that nice crunchy twang to it. I really love this sound. Unlike a lot of other modern blues guitarists the guitar tone isn’t thick, so the riffs and solos become a lot more noticeable. In parts this album almost goes a bit country such as in songs like Blame it on the Moon or Bitch on the Run. The slide guitar also adds to this effect. So, you could say this record is full blooded American.
One of the really nice riffs on this album is the one on Highway’s Holding Me, this one just feels like a song you’d hear on a biker show or some underground bar. It really is a nice touch. I know, I’m not really analysing this album but it feels more like a series of moments rather than a consistent record. Not to say that’s a bad thing, but everything on this album sounds like stuff that could have been on previous albums, there nothing really new and fresh here. I like it, but there’s nothing new being brought to the table.
The album, for me, takes a nice turn at track six with Jim Lee Blues. This subtle acoustic blues track is just a really nice touch and feels really sincere. Samantha’s playing is beautiful here and the song is really nicely crafted. Her voice is great and it just a fun song, definitely is one of my favourites. It just that raw talent shining through. From here, the album becomes well more balanced, still nothing new but very enjoyable. Songs like Turn it Up and the title track Wild Heart have solid riffs which get you air guitaring in an instant.
Ultimately, this is a cracking record. Sure, there’s not much in terms of new sounds or ideas. Yet, there’s a charm to it. If you’re an old school blues fan or a fan of that dirty southern American style of blues, then is a record you’ll want to get. Like I said, even if you’re not a massive fan of blues, there’s stuff here for you too. Cracking record and I like it, give it a listen.
Words: Mick Birchall