Montreal’s Adam Karch returns with album number five, a most impressive set of originals and selected covers. On most of the songs he plays several guitars with Richard Deschênes on bass and Marc-André Drouin on drums. He opens most tunefully with “It’s Your Song”, a toe-tapper on the power of music. Another highlight is by Alan McElcheran called “Fair Verona Blues” it’s a dark retelling of the Romeo & Juliette story featuring some fine fingerpicking from Karch. JJ Cale’s “After Midnight” gets a deep blues workout with Karch on a lap steel. He calls “Bitter Harvest”, written with Jim Stadnyk, a swamp blues and it’s an unhappy tale of a departing lover. Robert Johnson’s “Preachin’ Blues” gets an intricate fingerpicking arrangement combined with Karch’s innovative percussive technique. He writes in his notes that he can fall into a trance playing this and that it can last ten minutes or more – easy to believe. The generous blues portion includes two versions of an instrumental, “Porch Groove (Sunday Morning)” & “Porch Groove (Saturday Night)” that are further displays of his fingerpicking skills. Of the more Americana songs here, Wade Olson’s “In the Wintertime” is a delight. His web site is www.adamkarchmusic.com.

March 2020 - Rory Block
March 2020 - Layla Zoe