Blackwood Creek is a band that was formed back in 1970 by the brothers Kip, Paul and Nate Winger together with Peter Fletcher. We know Kip from the 80’s US Band Winger that is still active and also published a new album in 2009. So, Kip and Nate Winger reformed this band together witch Peter Fletcher and this is their newest, self-titled release.
Starting with „Out in outer space“. Yes..and here we are in 70’s orientated hard rock. Guitar based with harmony vocals, partly double layed. Straight rockin’ song with a good refrain. I think the production can be called old school without using all the effects and modern elements that everybody can use today in the studios. Ok. I didn’t know about this band before but it seems that Blackwood Creek try to continue at that point after their splitting up in 1980. Acoustic, sliding guitar at the start of „Nothing but the sun“. And this element continues through the song. This sounds happy, I can see the three guys walking along the west coast with the guitar and singing this song. Easy listening, easily played. The soundtrack for you holidays without sorrow or pain. Everyone is able to sing that song after short time. „Your revolution“ starts slow with a silent guitar part before it moves to a real rocker. The band again tries to transport positive vibes in their sound to the people. The vocals are more in the front in that song. By the way, the songs are not too long. Always between 3 – 4 minutes. Enough to say what has to be said, but on the other side less time to integrate breaks and different elements in their music. Straight hookline, refrains that can be remembered, songs stop. Not more, but definetely not less. More rock’n roll and rough vocals in „Dead stung“. Sometimes I can even hear some old bluesy Whitesnake in that song. The guitar part in the middle of the song is influenced in country music. This could be the song a hangman should listen too on his way to the gallows. „After your heart“ again starts with acoustic guitars. The first ballad of this album. Half whispered vocals. Here we can here the musicians background from the bands they worked with starting in the 80’s like Winger, Kix, Lilian Axe or Europe. This is for you ladies. Not cheesy, the sound of the band allows to say that ballads work the same like rockin songs. This is true music, nothing constructed, direct from the hearts….songs what the band wanted to play. Now we are going high into the skies, here comes „Albatross“. Higher vocals in the beginning, rougher vocals following. Really nice refrain and awesome guitar solo full of harmonies. We stand up on the high hills and watch the Albatross fly his way through cliffs and clouds. I don’t know if I should say this, but this song got me tears in the eyes. Beautiful song…enough said. „Jimmy and Georgia“ brings us back to rock’n roll. A song for the highways. Good movements from guitar hooks and vocals that lead to the refrain. I hear more Georgia than Jimmy. Heading to the south. The solo guitar is playing a little bit for itself, but that is a nice effect for the song. „Rack of greed“ is the fastest song so far. Lynyrd Skynyrd or Led Zeppelin could stand for that song. Straight song and the refrain will work good on stage to sing with the audience. Again I can also here some Whitesnake in this track. What a start in „Love Inspector“. Who drank there too much? Is that David Lee Roth? No, but the vocals are near to Diamond Dave. This song breathing some dirt and contains some weird guitar parts. New elements in the sound of Blackwood Creek we can find here. This song has its own, special charme. A litlle surprise but it fits to the picture of the whole album. „Joy Ride“ seems a little bit suitable and cannot keep the class of the songs before. Not bad, but the guitars and the refrain tell nothing new. At the end we have the long track of this album“Wooden shoe“ with its 6 minutes. After a canon vocal part this song becomes a real rock hymn. The chorus will let you burn your lighters. The canon vocals appear more often and the emotional guitar solo gives this hymn the right touch to end this album.
After nearly 20 years the brothers and high school colleagues reunited. I don’t know if this only will be a side project for one time or if this band will stay together for more. I wish they will do and I hope to hear more from them in the future.
If you are interested in handmade, true rock music I invite you to listen to Blackwood Creek.
review by Kerb