|Stop Kiddin' - The Starliters
El Toro Records, ETCD 3023
The Starliters. Well, I don't think The Starliters from Milano, Italy, need an introduction to all you Rockers and Hillbilly Boppers. They are performing since 1995, featuring many festivals and Rock and Roll meetings all over Europe. They also played with some famous artists like Robert Gordon, Mitch Woods and Marti Brom, to name a few. The Starliters play a mix of Western Swing, Rockabilly and of course Hillbilly Bop. The Starliters are a four piece band of high quality musicians who are playing their American Roots music with passion. Their performance on stage is filled with Rockin' energy and is great to see and hear, that's why they still play all over Europe!
This album "Stop Kiddin" was recorded at Pop Life Studio in Milano, Italy, between November 2007 and March 2008. It was mixed by The Starliters and Paolo Di Lello, who was also their sound engineer. The Starliters did the production of this CD themselfes. The CD contains sixteen tracks of which nine are selfpenned. It is also available on vinyl for those who don't have a CD-player (?). I have the CD, 'cos I have a CD-player and it's in my computer... it's going to be abused by this Starliters album while I am writing this review for you.
The opener is a great stroller, it's called "Come on Stroll", an original Starliters song, just as the wild rocker "Don't Wanna Fly Back Home". I played these two after one other twice, that happens not too often and means I like these songs! Over to the first cover, written by Franks and Johnny Horton, "I Do It Every Time". Played in a great mix of Hillbilly and Rockabilly, excellent playing here! Next is "I'll Never Be Your Man", a selfpenned Western Song with vocals that fit just right, it almost goes smoothly over in "I'm Not A Kid Anymore" this time with a leading part for the steel guitar.
Something completely different is "I'm Wasting My Time", uptempo is not the right word here, it's fast and hard! To get the "beep" out of your ears they arranged a nice Western Swing song, originally written by Cindy Walker, "It's All Your Fault", with on the piano guest Jerry Boogie. Okay let's go back on the steel with "Little Grass Shack". This is not, and I mean not my personal favourite track, I don't like this at all, sorry. "Long Gone Train" does makes it good for me, and surely "Once Again With You", a nice slow ballad, gets me right on track again. A special note to the classic "Take And Give" where guest star Rockin' Bonnie sings a duet with Max. Great ballad, great vocals, just great! When the guys are giving the lead vocals to someone else, you'd better hope that he or she can sing also. Well, that's the case on "Tennessee Local" where drummer Frank Dee sings. He does a great job too! And again with Jerry Boogie on piano. "The Honky Tonk Dream" is a song that yoy can compare with Big Sandy and his Fly-Rite Boys and BR4-49, a sort of American Country and Honky Tonk.
The next two songs are real Western Swing songs. The Starliters original "This Chick Drinks More Than Me" has great lyrics, as the man in this story picks up his girl in his '49 Chevy. She "becomes" a devil's girl because she drinks more than him, story told in very, very few words. I hope his '49 Chevy is a pick-up truck, she can in the back on the way home.... The second in the row of two, written by King and Stewart, has the title "Where My Little Love Has Gone". I surely hope she didn't fell out of that pick-up truck! At the last track of this album the guest musician on piano Jerry Boogie give this Hillbilly song a great Boogie Woogie stance. The song is called "Who Who Boogie". I think that Who Who is Jerry, he takes this song to the next level! I'm almost out of words here, all I can say is that you finally get what you are all waiting for: a very good, if not great CD from the men out of Italy!
The Starliters are:
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Reviewed by Rockin' Kees, 2008