“Hillbilly Voodoo” – Joe Clark & The Peacemakers (2024) [english]

It’s been a long time since I found an independent album to introduce you to.

Some beautiful and interesting ones have come out, but I don’t always have the spark to write about them: well, with this album it did.

I’ve known Joe Clark digitally on social media for several months and the performances he posts won me over straight away.

It’s not county, it’s not rock, it’s not southern, but an explosive mix of all these musical styles, expressed in a personal and never banal way.

He grew up on the banks of the Kentucky River and his music, his lyrics, as I often tell you about these artists, speak of real life.

Everyone can relate to it and this is what people love about this wave of independent music that is overwhelming everyone.

His debut, Storyteller (2022), contains in the title everything that is Joe Clark and I, listening to the piece Long Haired Southern Hippie, discovered that I had found a notable artist to keep an eye on.

The following year Joe, without the band that we find in this latest release, releases a completely acoustic album, 10 Years Too Late, in which his songs take on a different character and in which we find some pieces that we will find in this beautiful Hillbilly Voodoo.

Electric and exciting, this album starts with Enemy where Clark‘s powerful voice hurtles along with the guitars in a song with a very rock flavour. The touch of the keyboards is beautiful and gives a seventies aura.

Castaway is instead a delicate and elegant ballad that is greatly influenced by the great Tom Petty and the poetry of John Prine. Joe‘s voice not only suits a relaxed piece, but gives a performance to remember.

Don’t get used to the relaxed atmosphere because the next one, Get Outta Here, explodes in an acidic and driving guitar riff for a truly great arranged rock piece.

The solo with effects and the beating rhythm are beautiful, almost a hard rock interlude.

The piano introduces It Is What It Is and then the guitar increases the energy. A song that seems like a ballad, but the rock soul takes over, supporting truly beautiful lyrics.

My favorite on the album is the subsequent Fortune Favors the Brave: pulsating rhythm and guitar riff. Clark‘s voice gives another top-level performance, but the song, which oscillates between rock and southern, has character and a truly remarkable arrangement.

Another biting and very beautiful solo.

Im Gone is rock where the influences of Clark‘s musical loves seem clear: who said Tom Petty? I often talk about him in my reviews because Petty influenced so many musicians and was, in my opinion, one of the most underrated of all time, certainly a singer-songwriter of the greatest level.

Guitar riffs and piano whizzes like in a classy southern rock song: here’s Outta My Mind.

The guitars on this album do a truly remarkable job and in this song even more: fat, scratchy and with solos that draw on blues rock. Beautiful.

The title track is another southern rock with a heavy impact that almost flows into hard rock.

On this album you will find a few tracks of his acoustic releases, of his love for country music and the next one is one of these tracks.

10 Years Too Late is a ballad to which the guitars and the band give depth and beauty, compared to the dry acoustic arrangement. Not that it was bad, but the whole band likes it even better.

The album ends with scratchy and electric riffs and with the last Wish a Mfer Would you reach an almost epic rock. Drums and rhythm, guitars and a voice that is perfect for shaking the speakers.

A beautiful album that shows a notable evolution of Joe Clark‘s sound, it may be the fantastic band that accompanies him and also his experience, but it really seems like 10 years have passed since his debut.

Don’t get me wrong, the first album and the following are two excellent albums by a great singer-songwriter, but this Hillbilly Voodoo is a decisive step forward and a great rock album.

Electricity and emotion distributed liberally by a true independent who from the banks of the Kentucky river is ready to conquer the world and be part of the independent tsunami that has now invaded the streets that were once the exclusive domain of mainstream artists.

Happy listening,


Pubblicato da Trex

Sono un blogger e scrittore appassionato di musica indipendente americana. Scrivo gialli polizieschi e ho inventato il personaggio del detective texano Cody Myers.

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