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Steve Kozak Band Steve Kozak Band
Album: It's Time
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 12

I have never really considered Canada as a hot bed of music despite it producing the greatest, in my opinion, female singer of modern times in Joni Mitchell. I also realise that I have now reviewed six albums from Canadian artists and really enjoyed them all. This is in fact the second consecutive album from those shores that I have reviewed, the previous one being Madison Violet. It is fairly obvious that I will have to reconsider my thoughts about Canadian music and, despite visiting this amazing country on many occasions, I have never heard live music there. I must therefore make sure to go to a gig on my next visit.

So what has Steve Kozak got to offer? A four piece band, driven by their love of the blues and supplemented with some great guitar licks and riffs. As with many blues albums, this one has a feel of a live gig to it which is no bad thing. I have always felt that the blues is best heard live so this album offers the best of both worlds. A live feel from the comfort of your own home!

Steve has been playing the blues for over thirty years and is obviously still in love with it. He also has a sense of humour as witnessed in some of the lyrics and in the credits for the album where both the Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer get a mention.

"It's Time" is a mix of self-penned songs and fairly obscure covers one of which is "Kiddio" by Brook Benton. This has been turned into a real foot tapper of a number. Other standout tracks are "Goin Fishing" a hobby or passion of Steve's and "A Stranger in My Hometown." Both tracks effectively showing the blues at its best!

Steve is a superb guitarist who possesses a really natural feel for his music. The rest of the band is comprised of equally skilled musicians and I especially love the incorporation of the Hammond organ, the tenor and baritone sax on some tracks and the harmonica on "Every Night and Day."

This is undoubtedly an album for devotees of the blues and for others that may want to investigate further what it is all about. This is as good a place to start as any.

Rory Stanbridge