Shaw/Blades – Influence (2007)

Posted: March 14, 2007 in Album Reviews

Shaw Blades - Influence

Shaw/Blades – Influence (2007, VH-1 Classic)

  1. Summer Breeze (Seals & Crofts, 1972)
  2. Time Of The Season (The Zombies, 1968)
  3. Your Move (Yes, 1971)
  4. I Am A Rock (Simon & Garfunkel, 1966)
  5. Lucky Man (Emerson, Lake, & Palmer, 1970)
  6. The Sound Of Silence (Simon & Garfunkel, 1964)
  7. California Dreamin’ (The Mamas & The Papas, 1963)
  8. On A Carousel (The Hollies, 1965)
  9. Dirty Work (Steely Dan, 1972)
  10. For What It’s Worth (Buffalo Springfield, 1967)
  11. Dance With Me (Orleans, 1975)

Musicians:
Tommy Shaw – Electric & Acoustic Guitars, Keyboards, Percussion, & Vocals
Jack Blades – Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Percussion, & Vocals
Michael Lardie – Keyboards
Brian Tischy – Drums
Kelly Keagy – Drums on ‘Dirty Work’
Ben Krames – Drums on ‘Time Of The Season’
Colin Blades – Backing Vocals on ‘Your Move’
Randy Mitchell – Loops

Total Time – 39:02

Shaw/Blades official website

If you’ve been reading this website regularly, then you know that I have a problem with cover songs. It’s not that I am totally against them but I don’t like to see them taking up space on a new album of fresh material. Even if the cover is a good one, I will still be disappointed that the artist/band didn’t use an original composition instead.

In the case of this latest album by Tommy Shaw and Jack Blades, I knew coming in that it was a collection of cover songs rather than original material. Normally I don’t buy into this type of album, unless it’s by a band I really enjoy. I have always been a big fan of Night Ranger, Styx, and Damn Yankees so I knew that the performance would be top-notch at the least. Shaw and Blades have a chemistry that works very well and their versions of these Classic Rock songs from the early ’60s to mid ’70s are extremely good. Favorite songs on this record are: ‘Your Move’, ‘Dirty Work’, and ‘Lucky Man’.

Bottom Line:
There really isn’t much to review here. I could go song by song but, if you’ve ever listened to Classic Rock radio, then you’ve heard most of the original versions. The band does a nice job in putting their own spin on these classics while staying true to the original song. It’s a nice listen but it makes you want a little more…..maybe that unreleased third album by Damn Yankees? If you like these songs in their original form, then you won’t mind picking this up. Then again, you could turn on any Classic Rock station and listen for an hour. I’d bet you would hear at least four of these tunes. It’s a very well done album, it’s a decent listen, but it’s not essential.

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Comments
  1. Allyson says:

    I still haven’t picked this up yet…waiting for pay day.

    I really like the songs on this disc, especially “Summer Breeze.”

    Shaw/Blades are both exceptional musicians…I was reminded of their abilities over the weekend when VH1 Classic played “Classic Concert: Damn Yankees.” Great show.

    Allyson
    http://www.bringbackglam.com

  2. rene says:

    I love NIGHT RANGER but i dont think i will buy this album because its just not my thing those songs. Still your review was a nice read.
    Take careeeeeeeeee.

  3. DPTH says:

    I see where your coming from and good point, however, when the death metal band Six Feet Under covered AC/DC songs I HAD to buy it and it’s cheesily good fun! That and the Sikk tribute to Kiss album by a bunch of metal/extreme metal bands doing Kiss covers.

    A blast.

  4. I am like you Steve, I don’t know where the trend started, but it seems every hard rock act on the planet is doing a covers thing. So far we have had

    Warrant
    Ozzy
    Def Leppard
    Shaw/Blades

    and soon
    Poison
    Tesla

    and a few more that I am probably forgetting.

    This is on my list of discs that I am reviewing this week as well. I think I have been putting this one off, because I shudder when I hear “Cover Album”.

  5. Allyson – I really dig the Shaw/Blades partnership, I think HALLUCINATION is an excellent album. I would rather hear original material rather than covers.

    Rene – Night Ranger is a great Hard Rock band and is severely underrated. I think a lot of people tend to forget that the band was very successful.

    DPTH – Sometimes a covers album, or songs, can be a good thing. I guess my problem lies when a good band hypes a new album of new material and there are 2 covers on it. I just think that originals should be taken over covers. I have a lot of KISS tribute albums but it’s usually many bands contributing.

    Rob – The trend is to get out a covers album much like tribute albums were the cool thing in the late ’90s. I guess it’s a fast, inexpensive process compared to new material.

  6. Mark A says:

    I have to say i dont mind songs being covered, as long as they dont butcher them. I must say though, listening to this cd brings me back to those old AM radio days and having friends sitting around and singing songs. I know its corny, but there is an amazing comforting feeling about it.

  7. Mark A – I see what you’re saying. I’ve kept listening to the CD and it’s a good listen. I like the originals and the covers are well done.

  8. Moonbeam says:

    Tommy & Jack are both fabulous songwriters & talented musicians. Why bother with covers? I’ve been waiting for their next release since Hallucination – only to be disappointed. Sure, there are nice harmonies, but these songs have already been done, man. You know they’ve both got oodles of songs they’ve written since their last collaboration. Sadly, it seems this recording simply filled a record contract.

  9. [...] with Jack Blades are there and it sounds like a song from Kelly’s solo albums or from Shaw/Blades – INFLUENCE (2007). ‘White Knuckle Ride’ is another gritty guitar song that has a push and pull to it with [...]

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