1. She Wants To Talk To You
Dave heard Dave Thomas play at a theatre in Suffolk and immediately decided he would like to work with him. A few years later, when commitments finally allowed they got together and the result is G&T.
Shortly after meeting Dave Greenslade, Dave T gave Dave G a copy of Coldharbour. It was listening to that album that clinched the deal and work began on their first recording project.
At last, here is the long-awaited result – G&T.
DAVE GREENSLADE – Keyboards
DAVE THOMAS – Vocals & Guitars
DANA GILLESPIE – Vocals on ‘Late Coming Love’ & backing vocals on ‘One More Time’
BOB SKEAT – Bass
BRENDAN O’NEILL – Drums & Percussion
AARON LIDDARD – Saxophone
GILES STRAW – Trumpet On ‘She Wants To Talk To You’ & ‘Otis Rush’s Day’
To say that Dave Greenslade (Colosseum) and Dave Thomas (Blonde On Blonde) changed the face of popular music would be something of an understatement. You could write a couple of hefty tomes filled with their musical exploits so I won’t waste your time outlining all their achievements but needless to say that for both musicians only the term “legendary” will suffice. Coming together under the moniker Greenslade And Thomas the pair make and intriguing mixture and the resulting album G&T is an intoxicating listen.
Of course, putting two renowned musicians together is no sure sign of success but any notions of failure are allayed by opening track ‘She Wants To Talk To You’. It’s a snappy little number that strolls along to a strong backbeat and is awash with keys, brass and some nifty guitar work and sounds like it emanates from a Mississippi juke joint (it was, however, recorded in the UK). Dave Greenslade began his career in the jazz world while David Thomas began life a blues guitarist and this track meets somewhere in between. It’s undoubtedly bluesy yet it swings with a jazzy jauntiness and the result is a foot tapper that’ll rattle round your brain long after the disc’s stopped spinning.
Another area where Greenslade and Thomas mesh nicely is in the composition department. Dave G. mainly wrote the music and Dave T. mostly the words and the two combine to create a sound that’s very cinematic while the lyrics render each song a mini novella. Both conspire to place strong images in your mind and ‘Sabotage’ should do that:
“I smelt the rubber burning,
I could taste and smell the oil,
I heard the crash and felt the lash,
I heard you cry “no more””
Those words could quite easily have leapt from some really cool film noir that’s made even cooler by the soundtrack that Dave G.’s penned. Throughout G&T there’s a gentle push and pull between jazz and rock but mainly they exist harmoniously, and that’s in no small part to the lush production which provides a balanced, even keel.
Like most magical moments in music the two Dave’s met purely by chance but surely the universe was pulling them together because they display an obvious chemistry throughout G&T. The ESP they share is necessary because G&T is a multifaceted affair that takes in the whimsical ‘El Avenue’, the quintessentially English ‘Green And Pleasant Land’ and the soulful blues of ‘Otis Rush’s Day’. Dancing on light feet and to a Latino beat it sets things up nicely for parting shot ‘One More Time’. Like the tide parting towards the ocean, it provides a sense of closure and, to employ the cinematic analogy again, wouldn’t seem out of place playing over film credits.
While there’s echoes of their previous careers sounding in G&T it’s to their credit that this album doesn’t rest on past glories and is fresh and forward facing. I hope this union, and the album G&T, will be the start of a long and fruitful relationship and just like the drink to which its title alludes they’ll serve up further delights.
Reviewed by Peter Dennis - The Midlands Rocks (February 2022)