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Here we have what appears to be another prestigious blues talent, this time from Germany. Henrik Freischlader is a multi instrumentalist, singer, songwriter and producer, born in Cologne and now residing in Wuppertal who started out playing the drums until, at age fourteen, he heard Gary Moore on the radio and decided that guitar would be his main instrument. Supporting Joe Bonamassa (who is a big fan) in 2006 started to bring his music to a wider audience. In recent years he has supported artists such as Gary Moore, Johnny Winter, B.B. King & Peter Green and is now ready to unleash new album ‘House In The Woods’ which, with any justice, should propel him to the next level. Henrik and his band, which also includes Bjorn Kruger on drums & backing vocals, Theofilos Fotiadis on bass & backing vocals and Moriz Fuhrhop on Hammond organ & keys have delivered a brilliantly balanced album which seems to transcend many styles of ‘the blues’. My first impressions when listening to ‘House In The Woods’ was that of a true blues experience; it is clear that Freischlader’s love of some of the great blues players are a huge influence such as the aforementioned B.B. King, Albert Collins & Albert King. After further listens you then get a huge slice of Gary Moore & Stevie Ray Vaughan followed by modern players such as Bonamassa all topped off with a huge dose of Glenn Hughes’ funk, soul and rock. I now look upon the album as a sort of blues version of Black Country Communion, and that is meant as a huge compliment. The whole album feels retro and modern at the same time, which makes his sound, in my opinion, unique. Every song is a quality slab of dirty modern blues, with huge hooks and fantastic playing from the whole band, especially the main man himself whose guitar work is sublime and who also has the perfect bourbon soaked voice. Listen to the rocky ‘Sisters’, the funkier ‘Nowhere To Go’, the soul of ‘1999’ or beautiful ballads ‘Breaking My Heart Again’ and ‘Won’t You Help Me’ and you will be left in no doubt of his talent. You also really will never believe the band is German. Joe Bonamassa, in recent years, seems to have captured the public’s imagination. Now that’s good because he has brought blues to a new audience, but do not forget that lurking in the background are some seriously good players and groups that deserve your closest of attention as well, and the Henrik Freischlader Band is certainly one of those.
Cable Car Records
Review by Rick Tilley
4th March 2013
1) House in the Woods
2) Sisters
3) Nowhere to Go
4) 1999
5) Breaking My Heart Again
6) Take the Blame
7) Hear Your Talking
8) Two Young Lovers
9) With the Flow
10) Won't You Help Me
"Every song is a quality slab of dirty modern blues, with huge hooks and fantastic playing from the whole band, especially the main man himself whose guitar work is sublime..."