Artist:  Swanee River 
   Title:  Smoking Jacket
   Label: Rocksector Records  

With the band like The Answer and Rival Sons bringing back the big licked filled, blues driven, hard rock, it gives me great pleasure in introducing more of the same with Ireland's Swanee River.

The band consisting of Steven Horner (Vocals), Graham Baldrick (Guitar), Michael McCafferty (Bass) and Fionnbharr Ó HÁgain (Drums), formed in 2005 and have already released one EP and one full-length album.  Now the band have more recently been signed to Rocksector Records for album number two.

But it’s the debut full-length album entitled 'Smoking Jacket' that is the focus of this review.  The album is pure kick-ass blues rock of the highest order.  A bold statement I hear you say, but when hear the album opener ‘Young Blood’, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  This straight up riff filled rocker has that Bon Scott era AC/DC about it, with just a touch of Swiss rockers Krokus thrown in for good luck.

That same old school rocking vibe is continued with the thumping bass pumping ‘Gypsy Promise’ and the storming ‘Bouncy Castles’. 

But it's not all big licks as the guys do have mellower side and this in brought to the forefront with the great Southern Blues feel of ‘Blue Moon Rising’, with its almost Lynard Skynard / Zeppelin cross over sound.  

The big blues sound is continued with a little hard rock edge, with the tremendous ‘Flowers Powers’ and the almost psychedelic undertones of ‘The Dose’.

One of the strongest tracks off the album has to be the stunning ‘Don’t Follow Me’, again brining in a little Southern Blues mix which drives this one forward.  Very much in the vein of the Black Crowes debut album.

The tempo is picked up once more with the riff laden ‘Rollin’ and the excellent title track ‘Smoking Jacket’, before the album closes on a high with ‘Long One Tonight’, which wraps up a great album.  I for one can't wait for album number two.  The blues rock is back and back to stay, so throw off the shackles of modern life and put on your 'Smoking Jacket' and melt away your worries and take a trip down the Swanee River.


1. Young Blood
2. Gypsy Promise
3. Bouncy Castles
4. Blue Moon Rising
5. Flowers Powers
6. The Dose
7. Don't Follow Me
8. Rollin'
9. Smoking Jacket
10. Long One Tonight 



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