Blues Underground Network

Interstate Buffalo "One Step Away" (USA)


It is a rarity when you can throw a modern Blues Rock album into a pile of great Classic Blues Rock albums, of the 70's, by the likes of the Allman Brothers, Grateful Dead, and Gov't Mule, to name a few, and no one would be the wiser that it wasn't one of the great albums from that era; Interstate Buffalo's "One Step Away", is such a rarity. 
Hailing out of Little Rock, Arkansas, Interstate Buffalo started as an acoustic blues cover band in 2006, originally forming under the name of South 61. In 2009 they changed their name to Interstate Buffalo and started to play a more intense style of Southern Blues Rock. The last 3 years have seen them touring extensively with dates at the 2009 Waka Winter Classic, 2010 Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival, and headlining the popular 2010 Midsummers Night Jam in Little Rock, with a return engagement to open the 2011 event.
Interstate Buffalo consists of members Jack Poff (Lead Vocals/Rhythm Guitar, local
Guitar Instructor Stephen Compton (Lead Guitar), Chris "Scooter" Chandler (Bass), and Nick Reeves (Drums). "One Step Away", which was released June 19, 2012, marks the bands Debut release.
"One Step Away" consists of 11 Tracks, all originals and starts the ball rolling by ripping out a solid Slide Fest tune called "Down In A Bad Way", a song that has got Deep Southern Fried Blues Rock written all over it, especially via the deep Vocals of Jack Poff and the super Slide work from Stephen Compton. "Down In A Bad Way", was a great starter for "One Step Away" and unlike a few albums out there that hit you with a heavy starter, only to disappoint with lack luster follow-ups, these guys drive it to the max on nearly all of the albums Tracks and the ones that are of a little slower tempo are certainly no less intense in their delivery and message.
In addition to obvious feelings of the Allman Brothers, Gov't Mule, and the Grateful Dead, one will also be able to pick out a variety of other influences and comparisons to the likes of Jimmy Page "Down In A Bad Way", Jim Morrison "Harp On" & "Waiting Blues", Van Morrison "Cousin", Joe Bonamassa "Running After Shadows", James Brown "Camera", and even Lou Reed on "St. Peter". This immense feeling of variety is testament to the immense talent that is Interstate Buffalo.
For favorites on "One Step Away" I chose the whole album, as I did not want to give the impression that one particular Track was better then the other, as all the Tracks on this album are spot on great and don't deserve any diminishment by choosing others as favorites.
The name of the album is "One Step Away", but really with such a fine Debut release, Interstate Buffalo is really "One Step Closer" in showing us all what a fabulous Southern Blues Rock band they are.
5***** for sure for this gem of a release... Perhaps the best Blues Rock album I have heard so far for 2012.
Highly Recommended and Thoroughly Enjoyed...
Review by John Vermilyea (Blues Underground Network)
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