Blues Matters! magazine Issue 28 – Oct/Nov 2005
Look What We Done – Oddiscs 1005
“This band is a groove blues Chicago-style outfit – which pays respects to greats like Little Walter, Junior Parker and Muddy Waters” which seems a fair statement and furthermore Vocalist and Harp man Dave Dix adds “Tired of screaming blooze-rawk guitarists, I needed more sympathetic surroundings to ply my trade” well by the sound of this demo he’s certainly found those surroundings. Guitarist Alan Vincent could have a lot to do with it. A veteran player, tough when necessary, always tasteful giving this band a wide scope of styles to pursue. Band leader and bassist Pete Duke and Mimi Hajime Ueoka on drums complete the line -up of a band that definitely grooves, with respect to all those who they’re influenced by – Muddy, Junior, Walter etc.
Blues Art Studio Journal – Vol. 06 – 2005
CD – DVD Reviews Section – Look What We Done – Oddiscs 1005
This is a five track CD from a long standing London based outfit with a deservedly growing reputation – and a nicely varied set it is too, ranging from Chicago to New Orleans, a blues ballad to a hint of the funk but with the blues always firmly at the core. Well-played it is too, though given the collective experience of the band, this may come as no surprise.Singer and harpman (some nice Little Walter stylings) Dave Dix, the excellent guitarist Alan Vincent, bassist and leader Pete Duke, and Japanese drummer Mimi Hajime Ueoka have between them worked with the likes of such esteemed figures of the British blues scene as Bob Brunning’s Deluxe Blues Band, Shakey Vick, singer Mississippi John L. Watson, the Pretty Things, Otis Grand, Brian Knight and Big Joe Louis.That list should give some idea of their capabilities, and this CD is well worth checking out.
Blues In Britain Magazine – vol 7 #42 – June 2005
DemoBox Reviews – Look What We Done – Oddiscs 1005
A four piece London-based band whose various members have seen service in a number of bands, such as Little Matthew & The Intentions, Shakey Vick, De Luxe Blues Band and Druze B B. The line-up is Dave Dix vcl/hca; Pete Duke bs; Alan Vincent gtr; Mimi Hajime Ueoka dms. They are a Chicago style band whose heroes include Little Walter and Muddy Waters.They open with “Me And My Woman” which has a chopped out funky rhythm and sees good work from both guitar and harp. “Sick and Tired” gets an uptempo, soulified reading with more good harp. Things then slow down for the blues ballad ‘Hard Times’ with some tasty guitar fills and a really good guitar solo. The pace picks up again tor the jaunty Jimmy Reed-ish “Learn To Treat Me Right” which features some great blasting harp work. The Little Walter styled ‘“Look Watcha Done” swings along nicely with both harp and guitar being on the button as the saying goes.I had a recording of an earlier version of this band and I have to say this line-up is a big improvement. They are strong and solid in all departments and the song arrangements are good and tight. I enjoyed this one. Go to see them if they play in your area; they are definitely worth investigating?
Blues In Britain Magazine #5 May 2002
Reuben Richards and The Odyssey Blues & Soul Review at Gaz’s Rockin’ Blues, London W1 – 14/3/02
Bandleader and bassist Pete Duke has made things absolutely clear by incorporating “Blues & Soul Revue” into the name of the current incarnation of Odyssey. Now it does “exactly what it says on the tin”. Reuben Richards’ strong and enduring voice is well suited to soul and gospel. Even the often suspect television audience made hima Stars in Their Eyes finalist last year, and with good reason.All bases of the soul-blues classic songbook were covered in the context of an up-tempo and edgy soul revue. Pete’s driving stabbing bass on “Hold On, I’m Coming# gave way to the slower but no less intense “My Girl” on which Reuben employed an excellent vocal of delayed phrasing. “Lucille” and “Mojo Working” were two titles on which the keyboardist delivered manic breaks. (It’s a shame the roof is so low). Saxophonist Chris Kane followed Pete’s bass on an engaging intro to an extended “Ain’t No Sunshine”. His saxophony was also of note during “Gimme Some Lovin'”.All in all, this friendly club night with the seven-piece band crammed onto the cellar bar stage was an appropriate launch for the four-track CDEP Against The Odds. That the small dance floor was full and Reuben’s reluctance to leave the stage were both testimonies to that.
Blues In Britain Magazine #4 April 2002 Demobox Reviews
Reuben Richards and The Odyssey Blues & Soul Review – Against The Odds
A sixteen minute , 4 track demo from the outfit formerly known as the Odyssey Blues Band – but never having confined themselves to the old twelve bars, the band’s name is now much more accurate as this six-piece (two horns, keyboards, guitar, bass and drums) comes on like the Stax/Volt Revue on the classics “634-5789” and “Hold On, I’m Coming”. “Let the Good Times Roll” takes B. B. King’s many renditions as its starting point, and Bob Dylan’s “Meet Me In The Morning” draws liberally from Freddie King’s mighty mid-seventies cover version. Band leader and bassist Pete Duke has assembled an impressive aggregation and then supplied some imaginative arrangements and as for frontman / singer Reuben Richards, originally from St Vincent and who has worked with Steve Cropper and Otic Grand, what can I say? This guy has got it – there’s no doubt about it, even the most cursory listen will convince. Definately a name to watch for.
Rating 9 – Norman Darwen
Blueprint Magazine* August 2001, Volume 2, Issue 50
The Odyssey Blues Band at BB’s Blues Club, Merton Abbey Mills, 24/6/01
The Odyssey Blues Band on this occasion was an eight-piece ensemble with a strong horn section. The band comprised of Scots front man Mitchell Anderson. on vocals, John Phillips, on drums, Pete Duke, on bass, Dennis Metherell, on keyboards, the redoubtable Bob Stout, on guitar, Dave Eastham, on saxophone, Alister, on trombone, and a trumpeter. They played a fine collection of good-time blues and a measure of rock & roll just to spice it up a little.The band kicked off with that instrumental, beloved of the Blues Brothers, “Peter Gunn”, then tore into “Sweet Home Chicago” with Mitchell putting his experience as a stand-up comedian to good use, with his lively and entertaining stage presence. On “Rock Me Baby” the band were in laid back mood, with a gravely vocal, cool support from the horn section, and a telling guitar solo.Mitchell’s deep voice was to the fore in “The Thrill Is Gone”, with all areas of the band fusing and nice touches from the horn section, keyboards, guitar and drums, not to mention the bass. The up front R&B classic “Everyday I Have the Blues” was played flat out with all guns blazing and having a full sound from the whole band. Next followed the soulful “Chains Of Love” then a thumping version of “Johnny B. Goode” played full tilt with good vocal and guitar interaction. Here Mitchell went walkabout with a long mike lead endeavouring to get some audience participation and just have fun! Then came the strident “Kansas City”, followed by BB King’s “Paying The Cost To Be The Boss” played with respect and featuring a fine trumpet solo. On “Evil”, that Leiber-Stoller classic inspired by Willie Dixon, the band plumbed the depths of emotion and on “Mustang Sally” a good time was had by all.As a contrast, the band played that premium rocker “Lucille”. featuring some tasty saxophone and then went on to a soulful “Stormy Monday” and then the finale “Mojo Working” played up-tempo, big band style, with the band being introduced as they soloed in turn, and a fine finish from a fine band.This was an accomplished performance by an experienced band that made the evening flow. As all good bands do, made it appear easy. The Odyssey Blues Band is a thoroughly entertaining outfit who win over audiences wherever they perform.
Blueprint Magazine* March 2001 Volume 2 Issue 45
Demobox: reviews page 31
The Odyssey Blues Band featuring Judy Gallimore – Bluesy This outfit continues without Mississippi John L Watson but (collaborating here) with vocalist Judy Gallimore, whose soulful, lived in, husky voice belies her youth (judging from the cover photo, anyway). The overall sound remains big, bold, and brassy, rather more sixties Bobby Bland than fifties BB King now, as they swing through “Kansas City” and BB’s “Woke Up This Morning”, on which Judy supplies just the right amount of resignation. “Rock Me Baby” is rolling and sensuous, and their version of Eddie Floyd’s “Knock On Wood” restores the soul to what, over the years, seems to have become a vehicle for pop stars on the downward slope of their careers. A tight band, a good singer, four strong tracks; the sound is a little murky in places but as a demo this gives a good idea of this band’s not inconsiderable capabilities.
Rating: 7 – Norman Darwen
Blueprint Magazine* August 2000, Issue 40″
Saturday was the day of the bass player as Bandleader, with four bands falling into this category. Previously with John L Watson, The Odyssey Blues Band are now ploughing their own furrow. They are a tight, lively and accomplished band. This fine outfit handsomely entertained the crowd now swelled to over 300 since the rain subsided. I particularly liked Pete Duke’s very funky bass lines. A great ensemble band”
* Blueprint Magazine has now been renamed Blues In Britain Magazine