Artist:  Baltimore 
   Title: Quick Fix
   Label: BLP

If you could replace Ian Gillan in Deep Purple with someone obscure, what would it sound like?  What if that someone was a singer, say a bit like Tyla (of Dogs D'Amour)? Hey Presto ... you get 'Quick Fix', the latest, 11th actually, album by Baltimoore.

The gruffness of Bjorn Lodin's voice along with the Hammond organ by Orjan Fernkvist shouldn't really work, but as this album progresses, it does grow on you in most parts so you wonder why Lodin wishes he could find another singer to front the band.

The Selfishness story that is 'I'm All About Me' is a taster of things to come, but its 'Haze Of Wonder' and its jazzy rock roots that tells you how good these musicians are.  The Hammond organ does everything but speak to you during its funky session, while Robban Back on drums surely is a black jazz drummer reborn!  He literally goes off on his own thing that sounds so off the wall, you seem to forget this is supposed to be a rock album!  Weird but in a classy way.

That Purple moment raises its head on 'I Am Who I Am When I Am Alone', a bit of a tongue-twister if anything.  The organ emulating Jon Lord so much you'd think the great man was there himself.  It's around now you wished Lodin would take a drink of water for that voice as it sounds so dry you want to swallow for him.

It's just as well 'Make Good' and it's awesome slide guitar kicks in, because this is where those vocals are better suited by far.  The bluesy beat, especially the heavier guitar from Emanuel Hedberg going hand in hand perfectly, his solo swiftly ending the song, where it could easily be a bit longer as its as good.

'How Can You Undo What's Become Undone' is another title to slide off the tongue with ease (!), especially if you've has a few pints.  This ballad doesn't quite hit the mark for some reason, maybes it's a bit too sombre and verging on being dragged out that makes it seem that way?  It's as if it's two songs in one, jumping up a bridge when not expected then back down to another chord almost.

Good old melodic rock comes across on 'Tell Me Who You Wanna Be Today', the snazzy, scratched guitar riff similar to those used by Luke Morley of Thunder, right up their street actually, and then for another burst of slide guitar and blues/rock that is 'Somebody Look At Me' just makes things even better.  The walking basslines from Bjorn Lundkvist is a pleasure to behold as they say, only reaffirming the quality that is in this band.

That same quality continues into 'Shoot The Dark', again with the band leaning towards the jazz/rock territory that they seem to like, but you're taken aback by the flute intro on 'The Bet', along with some Beatle-esque keyboards in tow.  It's all nowt or something as it goes along, a mixed bag of instruments seemingly not matching up properly but making up something, though what?. 

It's a brave yet disappointing end to what is a reasonably good album, especially the bluesy tracks, so hopefully Lodin hasn't ballsed things up too much with the final song.  

Review by: Bob Baldwin

Tracklisting:

01. I'm All About Me
02. Haze Of Wonder
03. I Am Who I Am When I Am Alone
04. Make Good
05. How Can You Undo What's Become Undone
06. The Shame Lingers On
07. Tell Me Who You Wanna Be Today
08. Somebody Look At Me
09. Shoot The Dark
10. The Bet

 
                  

 

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