Jamie Williams & The Roots Collective
Move The Planet
Middle Aged Indie and Americana Kicks Full of Teenage Hormones!
To paraphrase Mark Germino’s DJ Rex Bob Lowenstein; one day we are reviewing Neil Young, Rod Stewart and David Olney then it’s the band from down your street.
Which is exactly why I didn’t get around to reviewing this album by Colchester, Essex’s Jamie Williams & The Roots Collective latest album …. we were packed to the gunnels with new releases back in April, as well as my home/work conundrum was spilling over; but today I finally find I’ve got a couple of hours to myself and I can’t think of a better album to tell you about.
Jamie Williams & The Roots Collective are the type of musicians who you will find playing your local music bar or club somewhere you couldn’t find on a map on a rainy Tuesday night; while the household names are checking their Spotify statements in their gilded towers.
As ever there’s a new shift in direction here; starting with Life’s a Blast; which actually opens with the sound of a motorbike engine; then the band kick in with a quintessential Pub Rocker that will have your toes a-tappin’ and your head a bobbin’ from start to finish.
The good times are certainly rolling!
With an eclectic back catalogue to fall back on too, these are the type of songs that the band can draw on when an audience gets a bit ‘angsty’ ….. something for everyone?
I love the slow, Alex Harveyesque Love Is Blind and the funkalicious Hyper Ecstatic too, both of which feature rinky dinky pub-piano and ‘Big Man’ sax as the sizzling guitars take an occasional step back.
As usual; the songs themselves are written from the heart and generally have a hook that winds you in like a big fat salmon…… you can put up a fight, but the Roots Collective will always get you in the end.
Even by their standards Love Is Love Isn’t is a bit left of centre with it’s Tex-Mex melody behind Williams’ husky vocals ….. but it’s still a winner at RMHQ Towers.
Two years ago I was inundated with ‘political’ songs from across the world; but post-pandemic they have been few and far between; but here’s there’s not just one belter ….. but two! White House Blues appears to be very influenced by Country Joe and/or Lovin’ Spoonful with its jaunty melody and punch the air chorus; and as far Our Leaders Are Insane ….. the lyrics bite like a rottweiler on amphetamines!
I’m no prude but I genuinely don’t like the use of the F-Word in songs ….. I think it’s not necessary as music is an entertainment for all the family ….. but it appears I’m in the minority.
Which brings me to Crazy F**ker and On Another Rainy Day, both of which are both clearly marked EXPLICIT.
The former; dedicated to and about their deceased friend John Tucker; actually has a great melody and were it a Punk song I can imagine the crowd going bonkers singing along …… but that’s not really their or our demographic, is it?
The latter is actually a rather nice Folky type song in the mode of Richard Thompson or Billy Bragg; and whether the F-Word is absolutely necessary is wide open for debate; as were it not there it would certainly be a contender for Favourite Song.
That title therefore goes to Cold and Dusty Road, a rather good song that straddles Folk Rock and Alt. Country with a tip of the hat to Americana too …. and the end result is so good, belies their heritage playing pubs and clubs across SE England.
In many ways this album will make listeners/fans feel like teenagers again ….. it’s got that vibe; but the actual songs are aimed squarely at us oldies ….. but in a ‘good way.’
Released April 2022