Reviews

Tami Neilson’s Chickaboom!


By Brian Rock

Spitfire songstress Tami Neilson detonates her 8th album, Chickaboom! In peak form, Neilson combines her explosive voice with her Rockabilly, Jazz, Soul and Country influences to create a consummate, combustible concoction.

The Jazz/Blues fusion of “Call Your Mama” is a sassy, brassy warning to potential cheaters. Singing, “You want to lie and cheat, well, whose food you gonna eat now? Whose bell you gonna ring a ding, ding?” With Jazzy percussion and surf rock guitar breaks, she puts two-timing men on notice: don’t call me, go call your mamma!

“Queenie, Queenie” finds Neilson preaching her recurring message of sister solidarity against all obstacles, this time with a sparse, staccato beat that plays like the Dixie Cups’ version of “Iko, Iko.”

On “Hey Bus Driver,” she channels her inner Wanda Jackson. Propelled by a rousing Telecaster and sharp hand claps, Neilson sings of the joy of anticipation of riding her countrified “Magic Bus” to see her lover. “Tell Me That You Love Me,” is another Rockabilly rave up. Possibly describing what happens when her aforementioned bus arrives, the tempo and lyrics encapsulate the passion of new love’s fire.

“Any Fool With A Heart,” and “Sleep” keep the Rockabilly sensibilities, but slow them down for a beautifully melodic Everly Brothers feel.

Neilson combines both her Rockabilly and Soul personas in the rousing tribute to, “Sister Mavis.” It’s a righteous rocker that’s guaranteed to make you stand up and testify.

The haunting, “You Were Mine,” is a lushly textured Soul/Blues moan. With a single, recurring guitar note marking the passing of time over a steady “ticking” of drum and bass, Neilson divides her life into the time before and after she lost her lover. Singing, “Take my heart. It used to be so supple and sweet. And now, it’s withered on the vine,” Neilson confesses some heavy Blues. Then her vocals ride on rising lead guitar and pulsing percussion until they intensify to a heartrending crescendo. Neilson’s voice hits you like an emotional wrecking ball. Full of power and sorrow, her voice combines the best elements of Soul legends Nina Simone and Etta James and makes you weak in the knees.

One of the most dynamic voices in any genre, Tami Neilson’s new album, Chickaboom! hits with a “Chickabam!”

tamineilson.com  |  buy  |  fb

Brian Rock

Brian Rock

Brian was raised gypsy style, moving every other year until well after college. As friendships proved to be temporary, Brian found a constant companion in music, wearing the grooves off Beatles and Dylan albums before moving on to Lyle Lovett and Dwight Yokam. Living so often in flux, he has come to value music and lyrics of lasting quality. Not moved by trends or fashion, he is drawn to timeless lyrics and soulful rhythms. Although now settled down, Brian still expresses his gypsy spirit through his writing. He has co-written songs with musician friends he’s met along the way, including several contributions to the 2012 ICMA Album of the Year, Family Album. Brian also writes children’s books and poems, including the Children’s Book Council featured title, The Deductive Detective.
Brian Rock

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