Gus McKay / Various / Caffeine

Saltflat Blues Review

GUS McKAY Saltflat Blues Independent On his fourth CD release West Australian troubadour Gus McKay moves on from the blues that infused his 2011 CD Roadrunner Blues, injecting fresh ideas and new forms of escapism into his trance-like music. Primarily a solo artist, the creative guitarist/singer-songwriter performs 11 new original songs employing bass, drums, percussion and blues harp on a few sides without detracting from the starkness of his sound. Despite the album title however, the use of harmonica and Dobro doesn't necessarily make the music blues. 'Caffeine', 'Extremely Voodoo', 'Out Like Torch' and Lightnin' Hopkins' 'My Starter Won't Start' are punctuated by a profound mojo pervasiveness, other songs revealing a wider expanse of McKay's musical landscape. With 'Murchison', 'Busking', '517' and 'Branches' affirming his talents as a balladeer, 'Dèjá Vu', 'Don't Say Goodbye', 'Ratrod' and 'Married A Snake' proclaim the artist's down and dirty rock'n'roll persona. McKay muses on road songs and topics relating to the human life journey. Whether fast, slow, acoustic or electric, McKay's music is characterised by unvarying melodic similarities, his voice rarely venturing outside a one-octave range which tends to manifest a unique hypnotic effect upon the listener. Al Hensley

No depression. Stacey Zering review

“Need my coffee, I’m gonna die,” sings Gus McKay on “Caffeine,” one of the toughest songs on his latest album, Saltflat Blues. The Australian singer/songwriter pours on the grit, brewing an intoxicating blend of raw blues, swamp rock, and funk. Ironic at how some of the best American music originates from overseas. Perhaps there is an advantage from being so far away from commercial influences that McKay is able to kick out the jams without worrying about mainstream acceptance.

No depression. Stacey Zering review

“Need my coffee, I’m gonna die,” sings Gus McKay on “Caffeine,” one of the toughest songs on his latest album, Saltflat Blues. The Australian singer/songwriter pours on the grit, brewing an intoxicating blend of raw blues, swamp rock, and funk. Ironic at how some of the best American music originates from overseas. Perhaps there is an advantage from being so far away from commercial influences that McKay is able to kick out the jams without worrying about mainstream acceptance.
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