Bad Touch - 'Shake A Leg'

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Bad Touch - 'Shake A Leg'

Incorporates a wealth of groove-laden, addictive rockers.

In their eight-year existence, Bad Touch have been garnering a favourable reputation as one of the UK's brightest hopes for the Blues Rock scene. With two highly impressive albums under their belt – 2015's 'Half Way Home' and 2016's 'Truth Be Told' – along with numerous support slots with the likes of The Quireboys, Skid Row, Tyketto and The Answer, the Norwich-based quintet are justifying the work they've put in by becoming a formidable live act.

"The Touch" made a sizeable leap forward in terms of maturity and dexterity between their first two releases, so how does album number three, 'Shake A Leg', measure up? On first impressions, you notice that the more obvious Blues and Southern influences have been somewhat suppressed in favour of a more direct, swaggering Hard Rock approach with more simplistic choruses that makes me recall their early days and the 'Down & Out' EP collection. A step back you may think; however, it transpires that the band ambitiously took the decision to write more spontaneously within the studio and this resulted in a more off-the-cuff style. With the lengthier arrangements relinquished for more concise, livelier songs and a robust, rough-around-the-edges production, the end result is a riff-orientated Rock 'n' Roll adventure – and it's brilliant!

'Shake A Leg' incorporates a wealth of groove-laden, addictive rockers like 'Hammer Falls', 'Dressed To Kill', 'Show Me What It Means', 'Take Me Away' and the brilliant first single 'Skyman'. These are interspersed with the more direct Rock 'n' Roll approach of 'Lift Your Head Up' and 'Too Many Times', all of which will sparkle in a live setting.

However, it's during the ballads where their Blues influences reappear and the outstanding guitar work of Rob Glendinning truly shines. The gorgeous 'I Belong' is a heartfelt ode to the band's hometown with wonderful, Southern-styled slide guitar textures, while the cleverly arranged 'Slow Tempest' is an acoustic Folk-based track with Led Zeppelin influences. 'Bury Me (When I'm Gone)' closes out the album on a gentle and touching note with a tender vocal from Stevie Westwood who's supremely impressive throughout.

Bad Touch, completed by rhythm guitarist Daniel Seekings, bassist Michael Bailey and drummer George Drewry, have youth on their side which gives them the potential to go a long way. They'll be embarking on their biggest headlining tour to date in October – I suggest you take the opportunity to see them in a club... while you've still got the chance
Ant Heeks

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