Review: The Guitar & Whiskey Club – The Guitar & Whiskey Club EP
GWC Productions/Orchard/Sony (November 11th, 2022)
Reviewer: Chris O’Connor
Now, I will put my hand up, I took on reviewing this EP because for some reason known only to myself, I thought it was going to be a Southern Rock release … and it isn’t. Mea Culpa. That being said, what is offered here is a set of really classy Blues infused Melodic Hard Rock, and I really am genuinely delighted with the finished product.
The band: Jeffrey Donovan (guitars), Mark Prudeaux (vocals), Frankie Yanno (bass guitars), and David Carbajal (drums) [although David Ponce also appears to be the drummer – so I’m a little unsure as to who actually plays on this EP] hails out of Ventura California, and over the past years has been making quite the splash on the live scene, having supported the likes of Accept. L.A. Guns, Geoff Tate, The Iron Maidens, Vince Neal, Jack Russell’s Great White, and Dokken (amongst others).
What do they sound like? Imagine Little Caesar, (Brian Howe era) Bad Company, Salty Dog, Cry Of Love, Tesla, King’s X, and Black Country Communion all thrown into a musical blender – then this quartet would be the end result, and that is a very big compliment in itself. Their music is unfussy bit beautifully constructed and performed.
Mark Prudeaux has a genuinely terrific voice that can go from a smoky growl to a soulful wail in a heartbeat, while Jeffrey Donovan is a legitimate guitar hero in the making – boy can he play! The rhythm section is super tight, and are able to groove with the very best of them, and the end result is that the band really does seem to have absolutely the best of everything – I can’t imagine how they are not due to go onto big things.
This EP features five songs, each amply showing a different aspect of the band’s abilities. The songs have clearly been finely crafted, they are played with obvious joy, the music is expertly and richly produced, allowing plenty of separation between instruments, so is genuinely fabulous to experience.
Of the five songs on offer, my two personal favourites are the soulful/wistful ‘I Know’ which has a simply dazzling guitar solo from Mr Donovan, and a brilliant chorus to boot, the other pick of the pack (for me) is the slow-burning and atmospherically charged ‘Lone Cowboy’, which is just totally stunning, and is a brilliant way to close the EP!
IF there is such a thing as natural justice, then The Guitar & Whiskey Club deserves to be huge. They ‘have it all going on’, and I hope 2023 sees them releasing a full album, and touring not only locally, but nationally and internationally too. Remember the name, as I eanestly think/hope/believe that this band is going to be going places very soon!
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