top of page
  • Writer's pictureKatherine Allvey


Individuals by James Oliver

Released in 2022

Recorded at Earl Haig Studio

Reviewed on 29/03/2022

Reviewed by Holger E. @radioteddyboys1983

The Band: James Oliver – Lead Guitar and Vocals, Mark Kemlo – Drums, Patrick Farrell – Bass

Coming from Blackwood South in Wales, James Oliver takes on Legends like Muddy Water, Scotty Moore, Danny Gatton and many more. He sings what he likes and he plays what he loves and the outcome is astonishing. Even covers on this album are more than awesome. James Oliver is not just a cover band, he is more like the Joe Bonamassa from Wales.

Track By Track

1.: Linda Lu: Starting the album with a Ray Sharpe cover which James Oliver turned in to a Neo-Rockabilly track just to set the tone of this album.

2.: Walk Don’t Run: If that is the way you play Johnny Smith 1954 recording of this song than i love it. Way up-tempo and more aggressive than any other cover of this track.

3.: American Cars: This track is like an American Car. Big and loud. Tons and tons of reverb heavy Guitar riffs and solos until the Guitar starts to catch fire. Rock&Roll with the power of Rock. The Bass is getting plugged until the strings are gone and hammering Drums that hold everything together(well sometimes Mark goes mad in the background) and that gives it an unbelievable backdrop.

4.: Sugar Coated Love: That rhythm is just pushing forward without hesitation. It’s raw Rock&Roll with a touch of Blues. They just nailed it.

5.: Albatross: I believe everybody knows this tune. It displays James Oliver’s talent as a Guitar player down to a T. So smooth and mellow, you could really think it is the real deal.

6.: My Own Business: This is going straight back into Rock&Roll Heaven after flying with the Albatross.

James Oliver goes absolutely insane on his Guitar. He makes it scream and howl like the fourth member of the band. Mark and Patrick are providing the background vocals and keeping James Oliver in check with the Bass and Drums.

7.: Brand New Cadillac: Vince Taylor and his Playboys would be proud of this version. Just gave this already hard Rock&Roll track a little make-over with some Neo-Rockabilly dust and out comes James Oliver flooring it on vocals and like Joe Moretti in 1961 on Guitar with a little twist right at the end.

8.: Mean Little Momma: Nice up-tempo track (please don’t think this is the Roy Orbison version), this is James Oliver and his Band with all guns blazing. Steam train like Bass and hard hitting Drums that push forward to give all their support to the Guitar and Vocal of James Oliver.

9.: Goofin’ Around: That’s not Goofin’ Around, this is Guitar finger pickin’ 101. Rock&Roll with a hint of Blues. Patrick gets the chance to really display his talent on Bass, which by the way is great. Mark presents you with a Drum solo that can easily compete with the best out there and i wonder of James Oliver has any skin left on his fingers.

10.: Miserlou: Let’s go Surfin’. Not much to say about this. Only: GO AND SEE THEM LIVE.

11.: Honey Hush: First recorded 1953 by Big Joe Turner and many time covered, James Oliver picked the Johnny Burnette version from 1956. And again he makes it his own by playing it a tiny bit faster and lazes the track with riffs and solos.

12.: You Never Can Tell: A little bit of Pulp Fiction is never wrong, only to play it a bit harder and faster served with a slice of James Oliver who writes his on genre.

13.: My Baby Left Me: Just give James Oliver a chance and he will turn the King of Rock&Roll into the King of Rockabilly. Driving forces from the Bass and a glorious Drum whirling up a storm to give James Oliver the platform for his Guitar to transform this song into a Twister.


I wish him all the best for his trip to the USA and let them see what the UK has to offer out of this world Guitar players.

This Album has something for everybody. The energy you can feel is unbelievable. Are they playing for fun and enjoyment? Maybe? I think it is more the love for their instruments and song from the past.

Fired up since 2012 this Welsh man turned into a Fire Twister that he is setting his Guitar on fire just the way he playes and mixes Rock&Roll, Rockabilly and Blues. Some people call him a Roots Rocker but i would call him the finger picking Guitar Devil in disguise. Plain and simple a genius.

Track listing:

1.: Linda Lu:

2.: Walk Don’t Run:

3.: American Cars:

4.: Sugar Coated Love:

5.: Albatross:

6.: My Own Business:

7.: Brand New Cadillac:

8.: Mean Little Momma:

9.: Goofin’ Around:

10.: Miserlou:

11.: Honey Hush:

12.: You Never Can Tell:

13.: My Baby Left Me:

2 views0 comments


bottom of page