When Mike Thomas of The Cadillac Kings offered me a copy of the band’s new album The Secret Of My Success recently, I jumped (or should that be jump-jived!) at the chance to review it. Right from the kick-off you know what you’re in for with this album – its a white knuckle ride of foot-tappin’ musical fun at the Swing / Jive / R’n’R end of the Blues spectrum. Its exciting; exhilarating; pleasantly exhausting… and a whole lotta fun!
The band consist of Mike Thomas himself (vocals/harp/slide guitar); Mal Barclay (guitar/ vocals); Tim Penn (piano/accordion/vocals); Roy Webber (drums/vocals); and Paul Cuff (double bass/Fender bass). And these boys know what they’re doing, that’s for sure – musicianship is of very high quality indeed. The band have been around since 2000, and have achieved much acclaim ‘…from the Canary Islands to the Arctic Circle’, they say.
Its a 14-track collection of songs; ten of which were penned by Mike himself. Its their fifth album, and arguably their best. Its difficult to pick out highlights from an album of such remarkably consistent quality. Pushed for favourites I’d pick the opening track ‘For Richer, For Poorer’; and ‘Cadillac Shake’ with its Zydeco vibe. For me these are the best; but with this collection its a question of which songs you personally consider to be the most fun!
The lyrics with their modern slant are a major part of what the band are all about; often being amusing; sometimes cheeky; and always good. And I think its the pure enthusiasm of the whole project that is another main factor that stands out. To be honest, if this album doesn’t make your legs ache from dancing, and bring a smile to your face with the lyrics, then nothing ever will! The Cadillac Kings know how to rock; and they know how to swing…and I guess that’s the secret of their success!
The CD comes in a smart tri-fold card case with the disc itself safely slipped into one side. The cover art is appropriately reminiscent of a ’50s thriller novel (as are most of their earlier sleeves). There are no lyrics, but there is a good amount of interesting info on each of the songs (other band’s please take note!); as well as credits and thanks etc. A fine job actually. It was originally going to released at the end of this month (August 2016), but due to the sheer volume of pre-orders, its release was brought forward; so its already available from: Proper Music.
Here is a video trailer for the album
For more info on the band; see review #100 on this website (by my guest writers Karen and Del); or go to the band’s website: The Cadillac Kings. And if you like the sound of this album, you may also like my previous review #117: Richie Milton And The Lowdown’s Pre-Katrina.