Starlite Campbell Band – Music News

Superton (label)

November 05, 2021 (published)

1 day

Suzy Starlite & Simon Campbell form the heart of the Starlite Campbell group with drummer Steve Gibson and Jonny Henderson on (many) keyboards. This is only their second album – the first was “Blueberry Pie” in February 2017 – but their sound is classic blues rock with great melodies and a sense of “pop”.

It was recorded very on the move as they moved from the Isle of Man to Germany, Spain and finally Portugal, but it feels really solid, cohesive and looks a lot like a band working together. .

Unusually nowadays all songs have meaning and purpose. Not just more chatter about love / sex etc, the lyrics are worth listening to. Be careful, music is too, and as someone who mainly focuses on music, it’s really satisfying.

The album traces styles from the early ’60s to the’ 60s, but still that great rhythm section of Suzy’s bass and Steve’s drums holding the center and propelling the music forward.

It all opens with ‘Distant Land’, a dazzling rocker with good rhythm and breathtaking guitar work. The harmonies of the break are melancholy and subtly hammer home the message about the refugee crisis. “Gaslight” has a wonderful Faces-style groove with an excellent slide by Simon and a terrific Wurlitzer honky-tonk piano by Gabriele Del Vecchio.

One of my favorite songs on the album is the title song. Dating back to the sixties and early seventies in its sound with a 12-string electric of Simon and Suzy playing the mighty Mellotron and Phiicorder, an insistent drumbeat and a tambourine bringing the sound back to the days of TOTP and Sounds Of The Seventies. All of this, and in one way or another, affects “today” just as much.

If you like a real rocker, head over to ‘Said So’, a great number although the subject matter is a bit darker than the sound of the song – the horrors of addiction. The creepy fuzzed guitar solo is mind blowing. They can play as subtly as they do on “Take Time To Grow Old,” a wistful look at losing old people before their time. Beautiful harmonies and a beautiful Hammond line which underlies the whole, emphasizing the emotional side.

The most unexpected number is ‘Ride On Cowboy’ sung by Suzy and with a rough, almost discoid, very funny funk.

10 great tracks and an album you can dive into or play in. Top stuff.


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