More than a few artists released albums during the COVID 19 pandemic, but Eliza Neals wrote, recorded and released two! The previous album “Black Crow Moan” was a perfect launching point for her latest album, and her second pandemic release, “Badder to the Bone” 

This new album is proof positive that Eliza has a lot more to offer than just a sultry voice. For this album, she pulled out all the stops, as it is self-written, arranged and produced plus released on her own label! Her unlimited confidence and immeasurable energy is as much a part of this new release as the music itself.

The album has an all star line up on guitar, including Lance Lopez (SuperSonic Blues Machine, Lucky Peterson) Detroit Rock-N-Roll Hall of Famer Billy “JC” Davis (Hank Ballard & The Midnighters, Jimi Hendrix) and co-producer Michael Puwal (ICP, Kenny Wayne Shepherd).

Eliza has a Detroit rock n’ blues pedigree, which when melded into the east coast style, with a touch of hot Texas guitar, creates a powerful sonic landscape and perfect vehicle for her solid writing style and fabulous voice. 

It starts with a bang with “United We Stand”, which was co-written by Mike Puwal who also provides the guitar on this cut. A rockin’ romp, reminiscent of Bo Diddly, it gets the heart pumping and the toes tapping.

Up next a smoky sultry blues, “Queen of The Nile”, featuring Lance Lopez and Peter Keys. This is the style and sound that just speaks to the heart, Eliza’s perfectly crafted blues that could melt the hardest heart and make the listener fall in love with her. Throw in Lance Lopez’ searing guitar solo with Peter Keys atmospheric Hammond B3 and Eliza’s killer piano and you just cannot resist.

The third cut on the album is definitely an homage to the pandemic. “Lockdown Love” is everything everyone experienced when the world went into lock down. Clear and plain language with a strong edge, Eliza shares her lockdown experience making it accessible to anyone who experienced the same.

The fourth cut kicks the tempo up a notch with the hard driving “King Kong”. Energetic and upbeat this cut has searing guitar and powerful rhythm sure to get you up and dancing.

Up Next, Eliza cries a “Bucket of Tears” with a haunting guitar provided by Mike Puwal. This is one of 4 cuts on the album that Mike co-wrote and co-produced with Eliza. (Cuts 1, 3 , 5 & 7) They work so well together and create such wonderful music, the listener is left wondering and hoping how much more they may work together in the future.

The sixth cut is an interesting one. “I’ve Got A Gun”, which features Billy Davis, has a distinctly retro feel that harkens back to the late 1960’s. Something that would sound at home in a smoky downtown bar on a hot Friday night.

Up next the beat driven “Fuelling Me Up”, powered by Eliza’s killer B3  and overlapped and stacked backing vocals. This thing is just down, dirty, in your face and undeniable, living proof that Eliza can create music that truly is badder to the bone.

The eighth cut on the album is “Heathen”, which is not exactly blues or rock, but a cagy melding of the two. Is it definitely not a love song, more a tribute to the clingy guy you want to shed. Eliza’s vocals and harmonies are impeccably underscored by John Gavin’s powerful B3 and grand Piano.

The next cut if the only cover on the album, Eliza’s take on Steve Winwood’s “Can’t Find My Way Home”. There are literally hundreds of versions of this classic cut out there, and Eliza’s is one of the best! Performed with power and passion, you can hear the love and respect Eliza has for the source material.

The final cut is a radio friendly revisit to “Queen of The Nile”. 

The level of work and love that went into this album is certainly on display in the final product. Start to finish, Badder To The Bone is a compelling musical journey through the eyes, mind and voice of Eliza Neals, one of the most powerful voices in modern blues-rock. (Terry Parsons)