SAMARKIND - DEBUT ALBUM REVIEW
Words: Anne Estella
Multi-national hard rock blues quartet Samarkind released their self-titled debut album on 24th November 2017, fresh from playing support to Inglorious at The Academy in Dublin last October.
The band consists of Irish frontman David Paul Byrne with compatriot Mark Dempsey on bass, Polish guitarist Michal Kulbaka and South African-born drummer, Marius Appelgryn. The album comprises eight rousing rock n’ roll tracks encompassing a plethora of styles.
Opener Black Rain begins with a rhythmic tribal drumbeat, building momentum as it goes and then crescendoing to a rich Southern blues-rock song featuring slide guitar.
The second track, Sun Stroke Heart, was the first single released from the album, garnering much success. It has a punchier sound compared with the previous song and provides a good contrast, revealing the band’s versatility.
Skinny Rivers recaptures that Southern blues-infused vibe, before the high energy of the record gives way to the slow and tender ballad, Good Man Call, which really showcases Byrne’s impressive vocal aptitude (and boy, can he hold a note!). There are times when you can hear echos of Pink Floyd in the blistering guitar solos. Thru That Door and Fire and Blood offer us a sound with an edgier slant, combined with powerful melodies and vocals to match.
Penultimate track Touch Stone Man is an acoustic blues number with a steady foot-tapping pace, that leads confidently into laid-back finale Blue Mountain. As the tempo increases, the album draws to a memorable close. All the tracks are worthy of a great debut album and the record is engaging from start to finish. However, the stand-out song for me is the superb Good Man Call.
It’s easy to see why this album was voted 10th in Planet Rock Radio’s Top 20 Albums Of 2017. This is a really well written and executed record that delivers some truly awesome riffage. I very much look forward to hearing Samarkind’s next release and of course, seeing them perform live.
Samarkind are headlining a UK tour this March with the fabulous Gabriella Jones and London-based hard rockers Dead Man’s Whiskey supporting:
16th March - Glossop, The Globe Inn
17th March - Evesham, The Iron Road, Evesham
18th March - Newport, The Patriot
30th March - Leicester, Firebug
31st March - Birmingham, The Asylum
1st April - London, The Black Heart
See their Facebook page for more details: https://www.facebook.com/samarkindband/