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Mike Biggar Mike Biggar
Album: Go All In
Label: Busted Flat
Tracks: 11

Sometimes you listen to music that stops you dead in your tracks, you could be driving and have to pull over, or it's on in the background and you immediately have to turn up the volume for a better listen, ' Go all In ' is that kind of release, I was stunned by how good it is, every track on this album stands out and spans a wide variety of styles that Biggar has pulled together to fit like a glove, from Blues and Roots to influences of Country, Americana and Gospel which will appeal to a huge listening audience, I receive in the region of fifty quality albums a month and without a shadow of doubt this is one of the contenders for my album of 2017, it's that good.

Based in St John, New Brunswick, he is a multi-award winning singer / songwriter who has been immersed in music from an early age, he sites gospel and country music as being an influence, as he does the Maritime region of Canada where he lays his hat. ' Go All In ' is his third release and he really has found his sound and groove with this album, I can see his soul in it, it moves me every time I listen, no matter what track is playing, I connect, I feel the passion and hunger he has for the music. From the foot-stomping acoustic ' Blood From A Stone' down through brass-backed, soul-stirring Memphis tinged numbers like ' Go All In ' and ' If It Was Easy '. The whole album is stand out and to mention only a couple of tracks does the whole production an injustice, it should be listened to in it's entirety, savoured and carefully placed back in it's sleeve until the next time you are ready to be taken on an incredible journey through song with ballads like ' Leaving These Days ' and ' Kinda Sad '.

Bigger also has a track record for top level co-writing, having on this album got together with East Coast Blues man Charlie A'Court, Newfoundland producer/R&B artist Chris Kirby ( Matt Andersen ), and Canadian Country hit-maker Chris Cummings who are some of the cream of East Coast Canadian songwriters and performers.

What is an extraordinary beautiful thing is to witness Mike carry these songs either in a band format or as a solo performer, with soaring vocals, an immense range and deft guitar playing he commands attention and is more than comfortable performing them in either situation. Having had extremely successful launches of the new release in his home province of New Brunswick, a highly successful tour of Southern Ontario - with another visit planned for the autumn - he is about to embark on his first tour of Newfoundland with a another lined up in the USA straight after. The album is currently climbing the Roots Music Charts in Canada and tracks are finding their way onto playlists of radio stations from coast to coast to coast and deservedly so.

If you are not familiar with Mike Biggar and his music this is the album that will get you acquainted, it is in my mind a masterpiece, showcasing not only his songwriting skills but with close listening demonstrates his ear for production containing many delicate touches of brilliance within. Listen to track one ' Blood From A Stone ' and behind the music you'll hear a gospel like incantation, it's spell binding and an incredibly subtle yet genius touch, fitting perfectly the bluesy slide guitar that hooks you right in above the stomp box beat that carries it, there are many more touches like it throughout.

I cannot wait to see Mike perform these songs again, he is infectious, incredibly talented and did I mention he is one of the funniest guys I know ? Mix that in with the raw talent, songs from this album and that is one hell of a roadshow you have right there !

Stevie Connor