From a young age Barrence Whitfield jumped into the world of music head first devouring any and all types. He spent as much time as he could around music, working in a record store, lending his vocal talents to the church choir and playing in various bands that played r&b, soul, funk and rock n roll. His musical journey led him to the formation of Barrence Whitfield & the Savages, an r&b infused rock band lead by vicious guitar hooks, rapid fire rhythms, soulful horns and Whitfield’s ‘Wilson Pickettish’ wail. They were known for their powerful live shows that were raw and dirty and were able to capture that same live feel on their albums. As the line-ups changed and Whitfield moved into a successful career in the energy field, the new music came to an end until now.
Through the years there have been a smattering of public appearances, live shows and playing in front of a devout fan base overseas, but now Whitfield has returned to the fold full force with a reassembled Savages and a new album of material, Dig Thy Savage Soul. It is a bad ass rock n soul record that harnesses the power of soul singers like Sam Moore, Otis Redding and James Brown while exploding with the rawness of classic rock like the Stones and the Kinks. The album explodes into your ears with the blistering guitars of “The Corner Man”. The rocking tune is infused with soulful horns and when Whitfield starts singing it is on. Tracks like “Daddy’s Gone To Bed”, “Bread” and “Hey Hey Little Girl” keep the musical party going and the bluesy “I’m So Sad About It” takes the listener over the edge with Whitfield’s powerful vocals. The guitar driven “Hangman’s Token” is the star of this record delivering a fast and furious beat as he sings about the hangman. Not one to just fade out they save “Turn Your Damper Down” for last. A Chuck Berry feeling tune it leaves the listener wanting to hit play again.
From start to finish Dig Thy Savage Soul has no weak spot. Barrence Whitfield & the Savages deliver a powerful rock album that cuts its way through the muddled music world letting listeners know there is a ton of damn fine music out there for your listening pleasure. Give this album a listen, don’t just listen to a song or two listen the whole way through, and it will find a permanent home on your record player, CD player and/or mp3 player.