This week MOODY, MAAS and GLEN played a tasty selection of emotionally soul-stirring songs from their recent album Black & Chrome live in Staines, Surrey.
We went along to see.
The collaboration of Ali Maas and Micky Moody started in 2014 as a songwriting project that quickly developed into some excellent album work. Another album is on the way.
Their musical union results from a shared admiration for blues, soul, Americana, palpitating rhythms and captivating melodies.
Aside from his well-documented time with Whitesnake, Micky Moody was also a member of Juicy Lucy, Roger Chapman and the Shortlist, Snakecharmer and others.
Ali Maas was lead singer and writer for critically acclaimed band McQueen.
Their highly accomplished studio band comprised of a group of luminous musicians that included the amazing drummer Jimmy Copley, who sadly died this month.
The British harmonica player Alan Glen — who was a member of Nine Below Zero (1991-1995) as well as The Yardbirds — was also involved.
Their pruned-back live-show boasts that same trio — Moody, Maas and Glen. We saw their concert at the Staines Riverside Club on May 18th. Other dates have also been announced.
Ali Maas took centre stage at the Riverside, with the master-musicians at the flank.
Her vocal style was reminiscent of Alannah Myles with many velvety, sorrowful layers and frequent cloud-bursting highs. The light accompaniment from Moody & Glen reminded us of stripped-back Fleetwood Mac.
Moody, who told the audience he suffered from bad back, “caused by a dishwasher incident...” created delicate and fanciful guitar notes.
In particular, his slide guitar-work was skilful. And even though there was no drummer on stage, he frequently provided percussion through clever touches and slaps of the guitar body and picking the strings.
Glen played electric rhythm guitar for the most part, often adding rich and expressive lyrical moments to songs with his blues harp or providing intense emotions via those howling solos.
The show began with the magnificently melancholic “A Change In Everything” with thoughtful contemplations behind every loose-toned reflection and haunting lyrics like, “Sometimes we are better off alone...”
And then we enjoyed “Woman Be Wise” with those warning words: “Don’t Advertise Your Man…”
Ali Maas suggested she suffered from “fried egg” after a cold — although her vocal was rich and satisfying, and did not seem fatigued or overly mucoid. Moody remained perched on his stool for the duration — maybe his back felt a little sore.
Excellent covers included the excellent “In My Girlish Days” [Memphis Minnie] and the syncopated standard “San Francisco Bay Blues” [Jesse Fuller] made famous by Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan and more.
Dusty’s “Son of a Preacher Man” went down particularly well with the Staines crowd. The interpretation by this talented trio was lunar and majestic.
The soft-shoe number “Emotional Powder Keg Blues” was apparently written by Ali when she was going through what she described as a “bunny-boiler phase…”
This number had pat-a-cake rhythms and expressive guitar-lines provided by Alan Glen.
Towards the finale we had “Big Mama” Thornton’s 12-bar blues song “Hound Dog” that has been recorded over 250 times and is one of the world’s best ever sellers…
The MOODY, MAAS and GLEN rendition had all the impudence & euphoria we appreciated in the original.
This was a thoroughly pleasurable evening filled with artistry and flair.
Words & Pictures: @neilmach 2017 ©
You can read our interview with MAAS & MOODY here: https://rawramp.me/maas-and-moody
Black & Chrome by Ali Maas & Micky Moody is OUT NOW via Armadillo Music