Review by Woody
Stonewire are a female fronted blues based classic rock act with a strong smoky southern rock flavour and When The Crow Flies is their debut album. It’s very impressive too and shows a lot of promise for the future but I think the really intriguing thing about this album is the fact that it’s an album full of songs which will kick some major butt live. Having seen Stonewire live I have firsthand knowledge of what a great live act they are and what an outstanding live vocalist Sky Hunter is, she can recreate what you hear here with consummate ease on the live stage consistently throughout a performance.
It’s hard to not focus on front woman Sky Hunter when talking about these guys but the fact is she has such an incredible voice which leaves you absolutely astounded it’s hard not to obsess on her talents. She has power and grit and the emotive quality associated with Janis Joplin whom is the most obvious female classic rock singer for me to compare her too. When The Crow Flies isn’t all bombast and power vocals though Sky does have the versatility to tone it down and show a subtler side to her voice, like she does on the emotional ballad ‘One More Time, which for me is one of the many highlights on the album. She has a vocal style that really invigorates the core of all the songs and really lifts them up and embeds them into your consciousness. Given her obvious natural born vocal gifts it’s an absolute crying shame she isn’t more recognised, there is so few vocalists in the public eye who can sing with even the slightest amount of passion and power as Sky can.
Guitarist Gareth Annabelle has a dirty southern swaggering guitar style and he creates some wonderfully infectious guitar riffs that provide a great energy throughout the album. They show influences from a multitude of seventies era classic rock of varying styles with elements of Lynyrd Skynyrd and Led Zeppelin been most noticeable. There’s plenty of groove and classic rock swagger but there is an ever present southern drawl on most the songs.
The groove driven ‘Favourite Bitch’ with its swaggering rock anthem chorus is sure to become a favourite with listeners and the passionate swagger of ‘Don’t You’ and the energetic rocker ‘Vamonos’ make them album highlights to look out for.
When The Crow Flies is a cracking debut from these intriguing English rockers and this album should see this talented bunch easily expanding their notoriety in the coming months. If you think bands like Black Stone Cherry are the bee’s knees than Stonewire more than deserve your attention and I’m sure you’ll enjoy what you hear!
Track Listing: Walk The Line / Favourite Bitch / Southern Honey / When The Crow Flies / Don’t You / Mama They’ll Never Know / One Last Time / River Blues / Vamonos / Winter’s Hold / Fix You
Album Rating: 8/10
Woody’s Rock Reviews: Favourite Bitch
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