New Brunswick blues musician Richie Young gives his material the full-band treatment it deserves.
Richie Young is well on his way to becoming the next prominent voice in New Brunswick blues. Following a long tradition of musicians who have worked hard to keep the genre alive in province’s capital over the years, and a handful who continue to channel the popular 12-bar structure (see Keith Hallett and Ross Neilsen), Young’s latest project, The Crossroad Devils, combine many of the genre’s foundation elements with contemporary influences and a fresh new lineup of musicians.
“I spent a long time looking for the right members to fit the style I was looking,” said Young. “The guys I’m working with now are an outstanding bunch of musicians and the way we are connecting is amazing.”
For this recording, Young is joined by Patrick Gushue on bass, Liam Keith-Jacques on electric guitar and Riley Williams on drums.
On their self-titled debut, recorded, mixed, mastered and produced independently, The Crossroad Devils’ live-off-the-floor sound is loose and unpredictable, harnessing the live-wired energy of early blues ensembles.
Across eight tracks, Young and his ensemble offer a mix of older material that first appeared on his solo debut, Attack of the Blues, as well as a few more recent songs.
“I originally envisioned some of these songs with a full band in mind and some of them are my best work,” said Young. “I felt I did not bring them justice just as a solo act.”
“I really like the way Shiskaberry Crawl turned out. I just wrote it that week of recording and we decided to throw it on the album.”
Altogether, this collection of music driven by Young’s growly vocals and pitch-perfect harmonic work makes The Crossroad Devils an impressive debut by any standard.