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ERIC SARDINAS, Boom Boom Club, Sutton, Surrey
12 March 2010
'he came, he saw and he conquered' was never more apt than at this all
too rare London club show by the larger than life Eric Sardinas. Looking
every bit the LA rock star, Eric brought with him the redoubtable Bernie
Pershey on drums (Walter Trout/Eric Burdon) and the rock solid Levill
Price on bass.
Playing his trusty electrified resonator, Sardinas took the stage with a
swagger. Just a few extended opening cursory runs, a couple of coarse
vocal lines, a quick cup of the left ear in the direction of the
cheering crowd and the band exploded into the night on the back of an
Elmore James style slide burst. Eric may have taken his time but sure as
eggs is eggs he proceeded to electrify the whole room with a mesmerising
performance that ultimately brought a deserved ovation.
ES is the
kind of performer who isn't satisfied until he's wrung every last ounce
of emotion from his music, every last drop of sweat from his body and
teased every possible spark from some visceral slide playing and low
down dirty blues (at times literally so, as he crouched down to mumble
his lines into a knee high mike).
intense fiery player who lives off making a connection with his
audience. And encouraged by an increasingly vociferous crowd he often
started with some blues intent and then took launched into some spine
tingling and combustible runs that took several numbers to the edge and
back. But edge is what Sardinas fans want and edge is what he gloriously
Whether singing songs about whisky as on 'Down To Whisky', or the Tex/Mex
referenced 'Texola' - a wild slide affair with mesmerising licks and a
thunderous back beat - or adding further mesmerising slide on Bullfrog
Blues' (Rory would surely have smiled at ES's physicality on this one)
Sardinas is one of the few artists who has God given ability to match
his flamboyant cowboy stage presence.
He growled, he grunted and all but added a banshee wail so that his
coarse singing came close to the raw gut tone that sometimes emanated
from his battered Dobro. Drummer Bernard Pershey manfully filled the
gaps with a succession of thunderous rolls and impeccable powerhouse
time-keeping while bassist Levell Price nailed things down in between
periodically reminding the audience that it was Eric Sardinas we were
rounded things off with a tribute to the late Jeff Healey with a
blistering version of The Doors 'Roadhouse Blues', by which time he was
leading the crowd into a full blown sing-along.
Prior to the big finish Eric had made a couple of announcements in
between several unfettered excursions on his resonator.
thanked us twice for coming out and supporting both live music in clubs
and the band in particular and later he was a shade more profound as he
issued a personal mission statement with the conclusion that 'It's music
that keeps it all together for me'. And having experienced this
incendiary show in a club setting no one in the room was about to argue.
from the Dobro playing and darkly ironic lyrics of New Yorker, The Right
Rev Swifty LeZarre, a mid 1960's Dylan looking dude who combines some
nifty Dobro and banjo playing with a dubious minstrel show style
sincerity that neatly warmed up the crowd for the storm ahead.
Feenstra talks to Eric Sardinas, 12 March 2010