Dai & the Ramblers - DUW DUW
This rough and ready for anything four-piece are based in London, but DUW DUW comes from all over the place, and throughout time. Old-style rock’n’roll, Cajun-flavoured toe-tapping blues-infused music that's ear to ear grinning, foot-stomping’ hand-clapping’ with a soulful boogie style that is contagious and worth spreading. Guitarist and singer Dai Price and double bassist Rupert Gillett were jamming in a London pub when veteran musos Alan Dunn (accordion) and Bob Loveday (fiddle) got up and jammed with them. That was two years ago and since then this new outfit has been gigging regularly and arrive at this debut album fully formed. Recorded ‘live’ in the studio, the manner in which Dai and company play off each other and deliver their music is an energetic and satisfying experience.
They set out just where they’re coming from and where they’re heading with an infectious revival of Big Joe Turner’s The Chicken And The Hawk. It bounces right along, everybody bopping, righteous and loose. Price shows off his songwriting chops with the accordion-driven Stones In My Shoes, that sounds just like it was created down in bayou land. They also turn in a slightly more laid-back approach with their hypnotic arrangement of Freddie Hubbard’s Little Sunflower; an instrumental reworking with guitar, accordion, cello and fiddle that is impressive. These guys are no one-trick ponies. Speak Of The Devil, another inspired original, is a reflective ballad that is filled with passion and conviction. Revivals of Sugar Bee and Iko Iko are great raw kick-ass Cajun-flavoured boogies. It is not refined, not polished—just some damn good fun. This is a compelling, muscled Americana-styled outfit, given just the right showcase here by producer Liam Watson.