I remember seeing Boston-based Barrence Whitfield at Byron Bay’s Bluesfest 2011. I really enjoyed the set that day, with Barrence showcasing his energy, vocal prowess and soulfulness. But nothing from that day would prepare me for the thrill of hearing his new album. It’s growling, menacing and scorching!
On August 13, Bloodshot Records will release Barrence Whitfield and the Savages’s album Dig Thy Savage Soul.
Following the release date, the band will tour the USA east coast, Europe, and then eventually other select cities across the United States. Current tour dates are listed below, including a record release show on September 7 at The Middle East in Boston.
Responses to the album have been excellent so far – there’s already a booking to appear on a late night TV show in late September and USA Today recently premiered the album’s first single, “The Corner Man”. Here’s a somewhat learned view of the album’s closer “Turn Your Damper Down”.
“I hadn’t heard from Barrence in a while…I have now. Don’t “Turn Your Damper Down”…Turn it up!” – Elvis Costello
Barrence Whitfield is a full-throttle soul screamer in the spirit of Little Richard, Wilson Pickett, and Solomon Burke. He has been described as the owner of one incredible pair of lungs, with limitless energy and unmatched enthusiasm for his music and his audience. Whitfield is an entertainer who maintains a frenzied performance. The Savages lay down a groovy racket that’s so thick and greasy, you’ll need to keep moist towelettes near the hi-fi.
After college, Barrence, like many music lovers, found himself working in a Kenmore Square record shop called Nuggets. There, he was discovered by guitarist Peter Greenberg, of the Boston bands DMZ and The Lyres. Through this introduction, Barrence got his first taste of the rock ‘n roll life and Boston’s music scene. Boston reciprocated in kind with seven Boston Music Awards.
The new album’s stunning track for me is “I’m Sad About It”, a slow burning fuse of a song, full of intensely plaintive vocals, screaming that will leave the hairs on the back of your neck standing to attention for a couple of weeks – worth the admission price alone. And there’s the relentless driving boogie of “Daddy’s Gone To Bed”.
Barrence Whitfield & the Savages are made up of Barrence Whitfield (vocals), Peter Greenberg (guitar), Phil Lenker (bass), Andy Jody (drums), and Tom Quartulli (sax).
|9/6||Café Nine||New Haven||CT|
|9/10||The Loving Cup||Rochester||NY|
|9/14||Webster’s Café||State College||PA|