Bees Deluxe A Can Of Bees

By Karen Nugent
January 2016

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Bees Deluxe

A Can of Bees

Self-produced, 2015

Among other accolades, Boston’s Bees Deluxe has a reputation for great musician ship and this CD oozes with that talent. Even with just seven tracks, the disc showcases jazz and blues – punched up with acid rock.

The record is incredibly pleasing, perhaps taking center stage at a hip Manhattan party, or mellowing down easy in the comfort of your own home with a big cocktail or two. The instrumentals are the most striking, but guitarist-vocalist Conrad Warre, from Newton, has created interesting lyrics for the four songs he wrote.

Warre who handles vocals with a growl, is joined by Watertown’s Allyn Dorr on bass and baritone guitars, Carol Band, from Arlington, on keyboards, and Patrick Sanders of Melrose on percussion and drums. Guests include Bruce Masterson on B3 Hammond and Sebastian Kossak on drums.

For blues fans, the best tracks are the instrumentals, especially “Roll Over Stockhausen” (get it?) with a repeating classic Freddie King riff; “Zoe’s Chromatic Blues” featuring Materson on killer B3, and the opener “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” by Joe Zawinul and first recorded by Cannonball Adderly.

Jazz aficionados will love “Damn Your Eyes,” which has tight percussion and guitar - Excellent percussion, in fact, the rhythm section here is outstanding. Jazzy types will also enjoy the last track, “I’m a Corpse Part 2”; (love that title) as will blues-rock lovers when the big hit of acid guitar shows up for a bunch of really great segments.

It’s tough to categorize this CD, and that’s likely the way Bees Deluxe prefers it. Warre says the band tries to “carve a space out of the Blue Note, Tin Pan Alley catalog, and fill it with modern acid blues.” One can hear touches of Hendrix, Amy Winehouse and Billie Holiday.

Whatever the description, the band and the CD are well worth checking out.

They have an acerbic sense of humor, too. The disc cover warns about unauthorized copying by threatening to stick burnt matchsticks “in your banana.” Under the copyright note another warning says: “Boston is trying to kill live music.”

It’s Intriguing.

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