Wired! is an International Blues Challenge award winning trio that features the talented Kevin Sutton (guitars, vocals), Keith Bakke (bass, vocals) and Rick “Stick” Jacobson (drums, vocals). If you haven’t seen Wired! “live”, Washington Blues will give you at least 10 good reasons to check ‘em out. With plenty of catchy songs, fine guitar pickin’ and a rhythm section that’s oh-so-tight – I dare you to sit still. And just like a “live” Wired! show – a fun time is guaranteed for all.
“Washington Blues” is part electric delta blues and part swamp-boogie – and is the ideal lead-off tune. “I’m A Train” is powered along by an infectious rollin’ and tumblin’ slide guitar lick. “Politician” features plenty of warm and full sounding bass lines from Keith. And no matter what political persuasion you are – you’ll find the message in this one spot-on. “Stroll On Down” has Kevin sounding vocally at times a bit like The Reverend Horton Heat. And there’s even a short solo that features some happy whistling.
“Woe Is Me” has a terrific sparse arrangement and sound. It blends blues and a rockabilly-flavored vibe that works real well for me. “Still Ain’t Got The Blues” re-visits and reinterprets a tune the guys did on their first CD (In Like Flynn). The first version was a delightful mid-tempo hillbilly / rockabilly-driven blues but this one gets a mighty tasty slow blues treatment. “I’m A Loser” is a mid-tempo mover – ideal for working out your moves on the dance floor - featuring Rick’s always on-the-money drum work and a fine vocal from Kevin. “Find The Blues In You” is a positive message song without being ‘preachy’. Kevin’s guitar intro on the slow minor blues number “Talk To The Boss” has an Albert King vibe. Keith’s rich, full bass notes really support this one and the harmony vocals at the end of the song are a nice touch.
Because Kevin, Keith and Rick are veteran performers they know how to pace a performance. Washington Blues closes with an a cappella version of the classic “John The Revelator” – the perfect way to wind things down but keep you wanting more.
A quick few words about the technical side of this recording: It was performed and recorded almost completely “live” with real instruments, vocals and microphones at ButterSound Studios in Everett, Washington. The engineering and mixing was done by Chip Butters.
As a fellow player and one who has also been involved in the recording and production side of music – I like what I hear.
Jim Hilmar KSER 90.7 FM