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Reviews of Billy Goodman's "Dark Horses"

"The Hooters light the fuse and expatriate American songwriter Billy Goodman explodes in his new release, Dark Horses"
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A collision of talents took place in Philadelphia recently when solo artist Billy Goodman fused his singer songwriter prowess with the production and rhythm section power of the hitmaker group The Hooters. Goodman, a touring resident of Germany for the last decade, reunited with his old friends The Hooters during their recent tour of that country; a stronghold of loyal fans for both artists. It was during a string of Hooters shows in Germany, in which Goodman was the opening act, that drummer Dave Uosikkinen began to join him on stage. Keyboardist Rob Hyman, noticing the intense chemistry between Goodman and Uosikkinen during the live show, approached them about recording an album at his brand new Elm Street Studios in Philadelphia when the tour was over.

Produced by Hyman (known for his numerous hits including "Time After Time"), the album also features his distinctive keyboard playing throughout. Associate producer Uosikkinen (who has played with everyone from Patti Smyth to Alice Cooper) was a key player, not only in the rhythm section, but also in the development of the album as a whole. Hooters bandmates Eric Bazilian (also a notorious tunesmith, including the Grammy award nominated "One of Us") and John Lilley added textured guitars. Fran Smith Jr. laid down his typically inspired foundation on bass. Billy's brother Frank added background vocals for the co-written title track.

But what Dark Horses is really about comes down to Goodman and his soulful vocals and gut-wrenching guitar playing. The listener is taken on a journey deep into Americana Blues with influences of Dylan, Waits and Young, featuring several solo numbers executed with flawless precision, including a visceral rendition of the Lowell George classic "Willin" and a bone chilling version of Blind Willie Johnson's "Dark is the Night." The Hooters enlightened musicality brings out the many flavors in Goodman's extensive catalog, from the Norah Jones-like "Love is the Test" to the grit of "Hellride" and the ardor of "Over and Over Again". Dark Horses is an American treasure, a testament of musical chemistry. The gold here does not glitter, but it shines, brightly.

"Billy's undoubted talent shines through at last - a great album!"
Review by: Frankie Callaghan
This album is unquestionably Billy's finest work to date. Some of these songs have been covered by Billy before, but his killer playing and singing and Rob's subtle yet very effective production has breathed new life into them. I love this album and can't stop playing it. There can be Only 1 - Billy Goodman is comin' to get ya!

"5 out of 5 stars - this is the one"
Review by: Bruno
As a longtime diehard Billy Goodman fan, I approached this disc with unease - what is this, I wondered, a greatest hits collection? Yes, in a way, it is. It's actually a great record and, to my taste, the best album Billy has made so far. It's the first time I can recall ever feeling thrilled to hear a career overview, the classic cuts newly recorded. He and his team have managed, incredibly, to create the definitive version of each of these songs, producing an album that forms its own statement and feels whole and complete. If Billy is preparing to make a killer artistic statement and wanted first to beautifully sum up all that he has done up to this point, this CD sets that stage brilliantly. A pleasure from start to finish. Sounds fantastic turned up in the truck while driving around New Jersey.


Last updated on 2005-09-09 at 18:15
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