Steve Lott Band Serves Up Seconds of Texan Spice
Steve Lott played in power blues bands for years in his native Texas. He moved to Australia in the 1990s after touring it and New Zealand. He quickly assembled an Australian band that rivaled any back home in terms of sheer blues musicianship.
His 1998 debut West Texas Refugee met with rave reviews in both homelands, opened doors, and positioned him as a fixture at blues festivals. Just two years later, If Licks Could Kill picks up right where the Steve Lott Band left off. He has relocated back to Texas and remains busy promoting his own band as well as collaborations with singer Kay Kay Greenwade, Johnny Rawls and the Rays, and Patsy Cline- A Little Bit of Heaven, a theatrical production for which he composed the score.
If Licks Could Kill is more of the same affair, except to an even higher standard of musicianship. As the title alludes, the guitar licks are killer. The overall band dynamic is tighter, louder, and if possible.... blues-ier. Some would say The Steve Lott Band blew their wad with the opening track "Money Don't Care", an insanely hooky up-tempo blues. "Too Hot To Handle" comes next and it's so gritty and cool you wonder why they're still an independent band. "Ashes to Ashes" which features Paul Cheeseman on Dobro and "If Licks Could Kill" are also highlights.
Cheeseman also oversaw the recording. In addition to being a multi-instrumental band member, he is an award winning producer. If Licks Could Kill is expertly engineered from start to finish; a tough task considering the high demands of this unique genre Lott calls Texas-style Rhythm and Blues.
Recommended listening for fans of Stevie Ray or Jimmy Vaughn, Roy Buchanan, Scotty Moore, and similar Southern roots, modern, or power blues bands. Check out their website for an updated concert schedule.
-David Seymour is a freelance jazz journalist in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA.