The blues-based project Izzie’s Caravan, has been making a whole lot of waves in the media recently. Not surprising, considering that in just over six months, Izzie (bandleader and lead guitar), Jamie (vocalist, guitar), Rob McLean (keyboards, harmonica) and Roque (bass) have released 3 EP projects – Leo’s Guitar (December 2019), Zephyrs (February 2020), and now their latest “On The Pull” (June 2020). In you’re into blues based rock, then, Izzie’s Caravan is probably the best band you’ve likely never heard of yet.
If you grew up any time from the late 60’s to the 70’s and 80’s, “On The Pull” will fire on all cylinders for you. If you have never heard of Izzie’s Caravan, do yourself a favor and get this release now. The whole EP is soaked in a nostalgic sound that evokes comparisons to legends like Ten Years After, Derek and The Dominoes, The Animals, and Humble Pie.
From the opening riff, you are placed on familiar but fresh musical ground. The vocal phrasings placed alongside the guitar riffs and solos, are what push these tracks over the top and into classic territory.
The bass playing is awesome, and the drummer has a steady hand which adds to the nostalgic feel that runs through all of the tunes. The keyboards are also very tastefully done. They don’t overtake any of the songs, but embellish them by adding tone and color.
There is a freshness and spark to the songs that give them a magical type quality when the music is coming out of your speakers. The quality of the songs and the writing, is a couple of steps ahead of the current bunch of artists on mainstream radio rosters.
As usual with any Izzie’s Caravan project, the EP doesn’t have a single dud on it. You can play it straight from beginning to end without wanting to skip anything at all. Often it seems a band’s first album is their best and then a lack of creativity and other issues make all that follows goes straight downhill.
Izzie’s Caravan are the opposite. They just keep getting better and better and “On The Pull” is their best recorded project so far. From the moment the EP opens with the blistering title track, “On The Pull”, the band will blister the paint on your walls every time Izzie turns a knob, or rakes a pick over a tightly wound steel string.
Put simply, Izzie’s Caravan are the real thing, and they rock like a Mother from the get-go. “Drownin’ Man’s Blues” is ass-kicking, gutsy, blues-rock for connoisseurs who missed the best decade of rock and want to go back for four minutes of pure ecstasy.
“Boneyard Blues” is original fury and fire, and it is awesome. Jamie’s voice combines scintillating strength and piercing grit, and he can go from one end of the spectrum to the other in one song, or in one phrase. He is artfully supported by Rob McLean’s harmonica, and the ever-present guitar chops courtesy of Izzie.
“Whiskey Alley Blues” hearkens back to the past, but is rooted in the present, in the band’s own vision and skills. It is not watered down, it is not replicating what came before, but simply building upon it, to deliver a thundering blues romp. Izzie’s guitar is fierce and varied, while Roque’s bass and the crashing drums are expertly placed into position on the track.
It’s clear that Izzie’s Caravan could literally play anything at this point and make it sound incredible. The latest EP release by Izzie’s Caravan, “On The Pull”, is a success on so many levels. It shows the band at a point where they aren’t afraid to bring all of their classic influences to meet modern inspirations, while holding on to everything that brought this genre to life in the first place.