Last January, I attempted to review the Kelly Richey Band, but I struggled for words. The one that seemed most fitting was “astonishing.” I was totally blown away.
After last night’s performance (May 25th, Ace’s Lounge, Bradenton), I am again short on adjectives, metaphors and similes. To quote George Clinton, “It was deep. Deeper than deep.” However good I perceived the January show, this was on a whole new level. The January show was one of the first for the newly formed trio; drummer Jyn Yates had just come into the fold. Richey, Freekbass and Yates had reached a whole new level, but perhaps it was Yates who brought everything together. In January, she was working into the band; after 100+ shows on their massive tour, Yates is now fully incorporated into the deep, deep grooves.
I said before and will say it again: Kelly Richey as a guitar slinger can stand on stage with anybody, anywhere, anytime. She was positively stunning, even more impressive than the January show. Her tour posters promise “incendiary blues and monster grooves,” and Kelly delivers the goods. She and another flame-thrower, Sean Kellerman, are on top of my list of guitarists who deserve much wider recognition.
And then there is Freekbass. If you had never seen him, you might at first hear him playing some traditional blues grooves to support Kelly’s pyrotechnics and think, OK, he’s not bad. But then, seemly out of nowhere, he slaps you silly. His solos were stunning. Freekbass can also stand on stage with anybody, anywhere, anytime.
Most importantly, this has become a vital unit, a true power trio with everyone contributing to a sum even greater than its parts. Check out her website [kellyrichey.com] and check them out live. You will be “richly” rewarded.