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Nashville, United States

Joshua Ketchmark is an amazing and heartfelt American singer-songwriter who has recently released his tenth studio album ‘BLOOD’. The album was produced by the man himself and includes twelve soulful storytelling songs from Ketchmark’s documented past, he has ever so honestly shared with us listeners that “the album is based on true events” and I could definitely pick up on this whilst listening but especially in the track ‘Death Trap’. BLOOD is an extremely impactful album and includes many talented appearances such as; drummer Zak St. John (Black Star Riders), bassist Ger Hoffman (Joe Diffie), Michael Webb (Chris Stapleton) on the piano and organ, Tony Paoletta (Travis Tritt) contributing with the lap steel, and Sadler Veden (Jason Isbell and the 400 unit) who played guitar on 8 of the 12 tracks on this album. A few of these names mentioned are true to their Country music and are iconic on the scene which explains the country essence that flows sweetly through this album track after track!

‘No Stopping Us’ is 100% the right choice for the first track thus setting the tone for the rest of the album. A slow and steady start with a simple guitar riff before building up a beat to each chorus and fading out slightly for the verses which I adore! ‘Covered In Blood’ is super jolly and upbeat, this is one you can have a little dance around to, an excellent follow up from the kickstarting track of the album! Slowing it down smoothly ‘Follow Me Home’ is simply beautiful! It is so intimate and feels incredibly raw and true. The guitar riff is sweet sounding with a sexy slide of the guitar that I feel expresses the passion within this song instrumentally. ‘Been Gone’ is the fourth track from the album and I believe this one is the showcase for his vocals! I hear an influence of the early 2000’s Bon Jovi in this song with the heartfelt lyrics and the soft Folk / Rock sound. The guitar starts ‘Death Trap’ with a light, sharp yet softly picked melody. This song really tells a story whilst painting a picture, truly sad and deeply expressive just like sharing parts of your diary. ‘All I See’ brings the beat back being driven by the drums as the guitar smoothly riffs over the top, this giving me Eagles vibes! This truly is an empowering song to listen to when you feel like you are starting a new life chapter. ‘Deadliest Thing’ is the song I believe most people could relate to with their own personal interpretation, it holds such a soulful sound with a slow beat and a laid back guitar. I love ‘Casual Subtleties’ it seems like a sweet love story between long life friends or even a relationship going south but holding on to the love. Heartfelt yet melancholy. ‘Ashes’ is hauntingly deep and Ketchmark’s vocals are impressive and truly powerful yet melodic. ‘Crossbone’ is the song you will find yourself swaying along to, I feel it’s the ballad of the album. The penultimate has to be my favourite! ‘Once the Whiskey’ stirs up Country roots, the lyrics tell a story, the beat is smooth and the guitar is a light strum with the song finishing on a sustained ending leaving us with one last lyrical line. This song touches the soul. ‘Tazewell County Line’ starts with a gorgeous guitar intro that then fades slightly as the vocals approach but keeping the riff nice and melodic throughout with the use of a slide guitar making this impactful and a fantastic finish to the album.

From start to finish this album is breathtaking, each song holds its own purpose whilst continuing the story that is being told through the tracks. The best way I feel to describe this album… it is like having Ketchmark sing his diary to us. Honest, personal and from the heart.


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