|A Joker & Three Aces, Gene Gambler & The Shufflers
Royal Flush RFRCD001
Standing out from the pack, we find this hot 4-piece combo proving themselves to be the 'new kings' of the rockin' clubs. They have played their heart out at the major weekenders and are now setting their sights on the European circuit. Their debut release is a fine combination of covers (mostly from their lengthy set list' with a few diamonds dug-out with fresh spades from respective record collections) and some superb 'originals' penned by brothers-in-law, Dave and Rob.
Dave penned the opener "Crazy Over You" in fine Ricky Nelson Imperial style. Dave's featheresque drum laden "Moanin' Minnie" is already a highlight of the stage act and is sure to be a floor filler on disc. Both the other tunes, "Crazy Jake" and "Like A Bomb" shows a fine songwriter developing his skills. Not to be out done, Rob penned the stand out "Heart Of Black" (dig that cool Vincent like intro) and "Party Night". Wayne Beard, a good friend of the band, chips in with the straight ahead Lewis/Berry styled wop-bop-a-rocker "My Cousin Louis" to complete the new songs with aplomb.
The covers include "For Quite A While", Ben Hewitt's great Elvis style Mercury gem from 1959. Jimmy Haggett's dazzling (amazingly unissued at the time) 1956 Sun classic "How Come You Do Me Like You Do?", Gene Simmons unissued Sun gem "Chains Of Love". The Big '0's superfine Sun ballad "Sweet And Easy To Love" and the Winkster's magnificent Teen Kings styled "A Cat Called Domino", which closes out the proceedings encore style.
Many of the songs feature some great backing vocals, especially on my favourite cover here, the great country ballad taken from the flip of Sun 311, Jack Clement's wonderful "Wrong". Contrast that to the intense "Jungle Queen" (a really obscure Fred Prentiss Sun demo, with an extra verse added by Dave) and we hear a really versatile band at work.
Liner notes by Phil Davies, 2003
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