Mixing a fine blend of blues and rock the latest album from Italian artist Ricky Ferranti is an easy to enjoy release which without ripping up the songbook lays some interesting and lively sounds upon the ear. The album Rusty Miles is the first under the rock project Ricky Ferranti & The Rusty Miles , a varied and strong release which is sure to find a welcome home in the ears of rock fans. To be neither honest blues nor hard rock is to our taste generally at the RR but the album still offered more than a moment of enjoyment to leave satisfaction so for lovers of the elements Ferranti skilfully uses it should be a platter of pleasure.
From Piacenza, Ferranti from learning to play keyboards then the guitar has evolved into a skilled musician which is openly evident on Rusty Miles. His history since beginning in and learning about varied aspects of music and sound has seen the release of the Ferranti produced album Feel The Blues from Psycho Train in 2001 followed the next year by his joining with Animali Rari and the subsequent releasing of the albums Stagioni and Sottosopra plus a live full length. Since then he has played with the likes of Fiordaliso, Smaila, Faletti, Grignani and Paolo Meneguzzi, but it was his love of the blues which seeded the formation of Ricky Ferranti & The Rusty Miles in 2010, a rock blues project based on covers and original songs. Rusty Miles itself is an all original collection of songs and music showing the band as a promising proposition.
The first notable thing is how American the album and Ferranti vocally is but in a good way, neither appear to be trying to sound authentic American but just instinctively sounding as the theme and song writing intended, especially in the more country flavoured songs. Rusty Miles is themed by a journey marked by love, the light and view of an angel and a child upon the landscape, and the emotions which walk separation and the great road ahead.
The title track opens up the map of the album with eager and warm melodic directions from the guitar leading into the expressive and reflective song. There is a familiar yet indefinable hook to the song which is infectious and with the keys having a slight sixties pop air to the keen pace of the song the track is openly pleasing. Alongside Ferranti on each track within the album the impressive bassist J.J. Gianni Grecchi and Maxx Zaccheroni drummer build the framework to the canvas which Ferranti lays his undeniable skills upon. Though some songs work much better than others for us this aspect is persistently impressive.
From a strong start the album moves into the melodic hard rock swagger of Don’t Stop. Though it lit no fires in personal taste here it is another infectious undemanding track which refuses to leave toes alone. It also is the first of a continual ripple of diversity which flows through the album, the following Keep On offering is a country tinged piece of heated imagination featuring an excellent solo from guest guitarist Mario Percudani whilst its successor I Feel So Bad is a bristling classic rock track featuring the vocals of Sam Ranieri.
Together the songs make a more than decent beginning but from here on the album truly excites. First up there is the magnificent Let Me know featuring the wonderful vocals of Sherrita Duran. It is a mesmeric dusty atmosphere brewing song with restrained energy and teasing melodic caresses. It is when Duran enters though that hearts melt and the sun smiles in adoration, her voice glorious and alongside the excellence of the music makes it the best song on the album by far.
The other highlights come through the brilliant music to have southern stills a jumping rockabilly soaked instrumental Country Junkie and the hypnotic ballad My Eyes On You featuring the haunting cello of Andrea Anzalone. The album ends on You’re My Cat, a track whose title made one decide it was a non starter but actually emerged as a fun rock n roller with Ferranti doing a tongue in cheek Presley/Vincent impression with a delicious double bass and violin accompaniment.
Rusty Miles is an album whose only intent is to have and give enjoyment and on that premise is a fine release to spend a random hour with once in a while.
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