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Cotton Soeterboek Band, The - Twisted (8/10) - V/A - 2008

Genre: Hard Rock / Southern Rock
Label: Caf Fine Records
Playing time: 31:05
Band homepage: Cotton Soeterboek Band, The

Tracklist:

  1. Set Me Free
  2. Pretty Maureen
  3. Twisted
  4. Colorado
  5. Leave Me Blue
  6. Little Sister
  7. Gold And Gray
  8. Still Of The Night
  9. The Game
Cotton Soeterboek Band, The - Twisted

No, it’s not a single guy unfortunately named Cotton Soeterboek, but rather two individual guys, Alan Cotton and Robert Soeterboek. Never heard of these guys? Here’s a primer: Cotton is a Birmingham-born, Texas-raised, Los Angeles-trained guitarist who toured with Maestro Alex Gregory, a tour that also included the likes of vocalist Mark Boals and members of JETHRO TULL and David Lee Roth’s band. He’s also made beer commercials. By contrast, Soeterboek may be a little more well-known to you Metalheads, mainly due to his work with the rock opera AYREON. Add in members of HALFORD, AGGRESSOR, AFTER FOREVER, and Rob Rock’s band, and well...you wouldn’t really expect the music to sound like this. You would, however, expect it to be good.

 

THE COTTON SOETERBOEK BAND’s influences are very clear: take the 1970s British Heavy Metal punch (not to mention the keyboards) of DEEP PURPLE and RAINBOW, add a pinch of the whiskey-fuelled twang of LYNYRD SKYNYRD and THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND, and top it all off with a very polished modern production. If Ritchie Blackmore and Ronnie Van Zant found a time machine in 1974, used it to steal mixing equipment from 2008, then wrote and recorded songs together back in 1974, the result would be “Twisted” by THE COTTON SOETERBOEK BAND.

 

What these two songwriters do with their style of choice is quite great indeed. Each song has its own slight variation on the genre. “Set Me Free” is reminiscent of early, pre-Hair Metal WHITESNAKE, as is the title track, whereas “Colorado” has a more dissonant quality to it. “Leave Me Blue” smacks of SKYNYRD, especially with Cotton’s doodly guitar tone and the underlying piano. “Gold And Gray” is a bit more Country-Rock, especially with all the talk of whiskey breath and sunshine. “The Game” is a heavier song, one that has that haunting yet rockin’ quality of certain RAINBOW songs.

Cotton and Soeterboek’s goal with “Twisted” was to deliver old-time Rock with a fresh modern sound, and they delivered in spades. Southern Rock isn’t a genre that gets a lot of attention nowadays, so it’s nice to hear it factor so heavily into the overall sound of “Twisted.” Thanks to the great production, the album actually sounds pretty damn heavy for a style of music that’s only a few pickup trucks away from Country. If you love DEEP PURPLE and LYNYRD SKYNYRD, this album is definitely a must-buy.

(Online August 18, 2008)

Mitchel Betsch



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