Savoy Brown's First Real Album!! Shake It!!!
chris meesey Food Czar | The Colony, TX United States | 12/12/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Most Savoy Brown aficionadoes are aware that Kim and Co released their first album in England only in 1967, that it was called Shake Down, and that most Americans have heard very little of this album, probably only the two cuts featured on the compilation Savoy Brown Chronicles. The true SB fan might have to search far and wide to find a copy, as with Jack the Toad, the later, pub-rocking Savoy Brown album now considered a classic. Well, friends, start searching again, because I have recently unearthed a copy of this excellent album, and believe me, it's worth searching for!! Kim assembled a multiracial band in 1965/66 and by 1967 had recorded Shake Down. It's a traditional blues album that is very reminiscent of Getting to the Point, SB's second album (first in America) that is much better known than this one. Shake Down consists mostly of blues covers, save one excellent instrumental, "Doormouse Rides the Rails", featuring the band's first-rate second guitarist, Martin Stone. His interplay with SB guru Kim Simmonds on such tracks as "It's All My Fault," "Shake 'Em on Down," and especially on the traditional blues opus "Black Night" are among the high points of the album. Singer Bryce Portius (one of the first blacks to front a British blues band) has a somewhat limited vocal style, but it works very well for this material. His highlights include the Howlin' Wolf classic "I Ain't Superstitious," and the Willie Dixon-penned tune, "Little Girl". Kim is already showing maturity beyond his teenage years in terms of track selection and musical direction; as a guitarist, he shows his chops very nicely on "Shake 'Em On Down," already clearly grasping the less-is-more concept that makes for great blues. His playing in these early years is still somewhat limited, otherwise we'd be looking at a timeless classic. Special thanks to Denis in St. Petersburg, Russia, for helping me to obtain this underappreciated gem. Now that Kim handles his own record distribution (through his new label, Panache Records), perhaps he would consider rereleasing Jack the Toad, Lion's Share, and of course this album in the United States to satisfy his legion of fans. Until then, please pursue this album diligently; it's a blues gem that will have you shaking it on down with the best of them!!!"
I'm a happy camper now - A MUST HAVE ALBUM
Charlie Rocker | Utah, USA | 07/22/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"HOLY SCHEISE!!! After all these years of looking for this album on CD I accidently stumbled onto it on [...]/Amazon.com.
I didn't need to read anyones review of this album to know I wanted it since I was once the proud owner of it on the vinyl LP album and wore out more than a few copies.
Contrary to what the one reviewer said about Savoy Brown's limited success, they were immensely popular in the Detroit/Windsor area, and anywhere within range of Canada's CKLW TV broadcasts of the Robin Seymour show, Swinging Time as he featured them on the show several times.
I think the most popular thing about them, before they hit it big on radio with the "Savoy Brown Boogie" from the A Step Further album was Chris Youldens gravely voice.
Other than that they gained a lot bigger radio audience after Lonesome Dave and Company left to become Foghat, and Savoy Brown released Hellbound Train and Street Corner Talking, among others. THIS IS A MUST HAVE ALBUM FOR DEDICATED SAVOY BROWN FANS."