The Idle Hands - Original Blues Rock

ONE OF THE BEST UNSIGNED ORIGINAL BLUES ROCK BANDS IN THE UK TODAY

  • The Idle Hands - Original Blues Rock
  • The Idle Hands - Original Blues Rock
  • The Idle Hands - Original Blues Rock

The Idle Hands Discography

The Idle Hands are prolific song writers and the recording catalogue consists of 6 self-released studio albums, 1 live album and a 4 cd box-set which contained the 1998 - 2004 albums. The 3 studio albums since 2009 have seen the band raise their professional profile significantly, with each of these albums receiving consistent 'top-marks' reviews and growing national recognition. The new 'Feeding The Machine' cd is already receiving critical acclaim with significant international airplay and exceptional reviews since it's release in June 2014.



FEEDING THE MACHINE


Feeding The Machine - The Idle Hands

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About

"AN EXCEPTIONAL NEW 12 TRACK ALBUM FROM THE MASTERS OF BRITISH HARD ROCK BLUES"


Track Listing

 

The Band

  • Phil Allen - Vocals, Blues Harp & Percussion
  • Dave Robinson - Guitars
  • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
  • Paul Heydon - Drums

Info

  • Recorded: The Foundry Chesterfield
  • Mastered: Digital Audio Skipton

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FEEDING THE MACHINE CD

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FEEDING THE MACHINE - Album Reviews


From Chesterfield 'The Idle Hands' are a cut above the average blues rock band and have proved this on the new album 'Feeding The Machine'. Fronting the band on vocals, harmonica and percussion is the dynamic and flamboyant Phil Allen. Dave Robinson runs the action on 'super Strat' guitar, while the power houses of the rhythm section are Jamie Burns on bass and backing vocals and Paul Heydon on drums. All the tracks on the album are self penned.

The intro' to the album gives you a raw and rockin' blues number, 'Fever', introducing the talents of Dave on guitar and Phil on blues harp. Following this, 'The Devil And The Deep Blue' is an 'in the groove' blues rock track with some great rhythms. Moving towards rock n' roll, 'Get Up And Dance' adds a different flavour. 'Read Your Mind' however, is a classic rock number with great vocals from Phil, with a bit of funky stuff towards the end which all adds to the interest.

The next track is one of my favourites. An acoustic blues 'The Song Goes On', has some class slide and guitar playing leaning towards country blues. I have to say the following track 'Sad Again', an instrumental, just blew me away. A slow meaningful track with beautiful guitar work from Dave and played with such passion.

Now we get into a real up tempo funky number, 'Might Be Foolin' ... variety is the spice! Moving on to another of my favourite tracks 'Before The Setting Sun', this is blues with an edge with great vocals from Phil. It is a slow number with bass power and drum driven and excellent raw guitar from Dave.

'Weatherman' is a classic slow blues rock number, a great take and played with passion. On the next rocky track, 'Your Time Will Come' has some brilliant slide guitar with definite influences of a certain Mr Page. Some great harp input from Phil.

The penultimate track on this excellent album, 'Live For The Moment' is a classic slow blues telling a story, well sung by Phil. To complete the album, another great acoustic take 'Second Time Around', which is an up tempo, rhythmic, country blues with super slide guitar, the track has a 'dusting' of Dylan, love it!

Blues meets classic rock is a description I could give to 'The Idle Hands'. They are an incredibly hard working band and are a 'must see' live, to get the whole picture. There are definite influences in their music from Rory Gallaher to Jimmy Page and Robert Plant et al, but they have their very own distinctive stamp which makes them unique. Excellent!
Rosy Greer - Lancashire Blues Archive

In the time honoured tradition when all creative musicians must search for the holy grail of pure artistic inspiration which creates and reinforces their own identity a seminal moment occurs, like Robert Johnson standing at the crossroads The Idle Hands have now been overwhelmed by their own magic to produce an album of song potions for the heart, body and soul, the results are electrifying.

“Feeding The Machine” is much more than just another blues/rock album as it has depth and variety with every song containing something different for the listener to latch onto. From the blues/funk groove of “Read Your Mind” to the stylistic mississippi porch dobro sounds of “Your Song Goes On” it also has the added bonus of some very momentous tracks just waiting to be discovered that must be given pride of place in this album. “Sad Again” is one of those such tracks which is a sentimental guitar blues instrumental reminiscent of Gary Moore and Snowy White which avoids some of the pitfalls of a clichéd power surge solo, with the recording defying overkill relying on just pure emotion which pulls your heart strings in tune with the song.

Guitarist Dave Robinson’s solo passages are cutting visceral staccato latitudes indicative of a restless soul intent of pouring out the emotional frustrations of a lifetime into every note he frets questing for the lost chord whilst still extolling the theme of the song, which is something which sets him apart from many of his contemporaries, a truly extraordinary musician. “Before The Setting Of The Sun” has very strong Zeppelin influences as does “Your Time Will Come” displaying the hallmark Page/Plant style vocal and guitar interplay whilst “Weatherman” is a brooding slow burner which is all pervasive and consuming as the band’s talisman and vocalist Phil Allen delivers the song storyline with true pathos as only he can.

Vocalists and front men of his calibre are very thin on the ground these days but in truth Mr Allen is the ‘Weatherman’ for the band, an inspired and almost omnipotent interconnecting force that controls the elements as both the storm bringer or the rainbow maker. It has to be said the magnificent bass tones of Jamie Burns and drummer Paul Heydon are a rhythm section to dream about and provide the ultimate skin tight backdrop for the guitar and vocals to weave their magic upon in this delightful musical tapestry.

One of the albums finest songs is “Live For The Moment” which has to be manna from heaven to my ears, it has every magical organic ingredient borne out of reflective and deep seated nostalgic human emotion which makes it a totally addictive musical intoxicant. As a slow soulful but dynamic song very much in the style of Otis Redding it reaches climatic overload on the chorus lines and in the songs finale. Surreally sensitive guitar sounds permeate throughout this song as it reaches out into your soul and makes you want to listen, always a sign of exceptionally good music.

I often talk of essential music and this album certainly falls into that category with so many quality tracks to eulogise about, no matter what your musical persuasion may happen to be the songwriting and performances reign supreme here in these recordings I for one will always worship and pay homage with unashamed idolatry to musical creativity as long as musicians and songwriters of this ilk are allowed to walk this planet and perform to their audience. They say the devil makes work for Idle Hands, not a chance in hell here, as these guys are too busy “Feeding The Machine”, it is without doubt this bands best album release to date!
Lucas Campbell


READY FOR BUSINESS


Feeding The Machine - The Idle Hands

Released 2011


'READY FOR BUSINESS' CD

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About

16 powerful original blues rock tracks including the British Blues Award nominated 'When I First Met Chicago" Classic Rock Blues Magazine featured 'Weep & Moan' on its cover-mount disc and acclaimed "Britain's Best Unsigned Blues-Rockers".


Track Listing

 

The Band

  • Phil Allen - Vocals, Blues Harp
  • Dave Robinson - Guitars
  • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
  • Paul Heydon - Drums & Percussion
  • Additional Backing vocals by The Pitz

Info

  • Recorded: The Foundry Chesterfield
  • Mastered: Digital Audio Skipton

Ready For Business



Weep & Moan

 


READY FOR BUSINESS - Album Reviews


Recorded in the home of the crooked spire, there is nothing crooked about this release it is pure and honest Blues, played with power and panache. Although there last release seemed a bit more in the blues rock category this is a whole different prospect, exhibiting the bands undoubted talent.

Fairly low profile on the British blues circuit this band should get more recognition with this release. Having said that they have had a bit of airplay and good testaments from fellow songsters. Enough said then, does this release match their pedigree, simple answer to this, but go and buy this release to find out! This release flows like a meandering river of Blues styles from the rocky title track "Ready for business" to the excellent "Lay my burden down" with soulful and lilting vocals by the phenomenal Phil Allen who is also the lyricist and powerful front man of the group.

Especially on such a standard as "When I first met Chicago" and the haunting ballad "Take a closer look" certainly a statement relating to these boys in general. The release ends with a funky blues style "Everybody Talkin" a song the band showing their prowess as a close knit unit and much accomplished musicians. They have their own slant on the Blues, go and see them in concert and spread the word, British blues doesn't get much better than this!

Colin Campbell




 
The first time I saw The Idle Hands, I thought “this is a band that’s going places”!

That was three albums ago and with each release this band have progressed in songwriting, performance and production qualities to such an extent that this albums title "Ready For Business" is really profound, in as much that they are clearly showing us that they’re ready to take their place on the major circuit and I would have to agree!

To be honest, I can’t find a bad track or a ‘filler’ on this hour long journey which flies by leaving the listener wanting more. Phil Allen’s first class vocals are sung with real confidence, whether it’s pure guitar matching raunch of the Zeppelin drenched ‘Weep & moan’ , driving power-boogie of “Keep up with the Jones’, or heartfelt acoustics like ‘When shadows fall’ and stripped back front-porch delta slide style of “Lay my burden down”, this is the voice of a true rock blues frontman.

I couldn’t ‘pigeonhole’ the band, but why should I, they fluidly explore, encapsulate and press the boundaries of Blues in one unique original sound, throughout which guitarist Dave Robinson is a revelation and plays his critical part in binding the Chesterfield 4-piece together. Dave could hold his own with any of the greats, displaying incredible skill in a diversity of styles where Messrs Page, Hendrix & Gallagher must surely be some of his most impassioned influencers. It’s all here, hard-edged raw blues guitar in “A place like this” and the B.B King styled “I get the blame” are matched by passionate intense solos and vocal power on “Whenever you’re around” and slow blues of “When I first met Chicago”. Tasteful melody, restraint and pumping rhythms of the Free flavoured “She got the sunshine” give way to a classy solo acoustic guitar rag in “Dirty old Rag”. There’s Hendrix style funky rock blues too with “Everybody Talkin” and the fabulous title track where Jamie Burns displays more of his skilful rock solid basslines which lock every song together in a vice like grip with the underpinning powerhouse drumming of Paul Heydon.

An excellent package which thankfully proves that dynamic, contemporary British Blues Rock is alive and well. This album has to be their Dark Side Of The Moon and these guys seem truly ‘ready for business’, so everybody should be talking about them because if you like highly original blues with a sound all of its own, this album has to be for you, 16 tracks of pure enjoyment.!!!!

10/10 Dave Rosling








 

ALL NIGHT SINNIN'


Feeding The Machine - The Idle Hands

Released 2009


'ALL NIGHT SINNIN' CD
 

About

This album officially put The Idle Hands on the British Blues Rock Band map after receiving high acclaim in reviews and on Planet Rock Radio from Rick Wakeman. 13 original tracks and the first album with drummer Paul Heydon.


Track Listing

 

The Band

  • Phil Allen - Vocals, Blues Harp
  • Dave Robinson - Guitars
  • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
  • Paul Heydon - Drums

Info

  • Recorded: The Foundry Chesterfield
  • Mastered: Digital Audio Skipton

I Ain't Broken



ALL NIGHT SINNIN' - Album Reviews


The Idle Hands return with their fifth album and although a blues band, you can see why Rick Wakeman might be a fan – enjoyably, they have that epic, explorative quality so beloved by proggers. Fortunately, they avoid the endless nurdling similarly beloved.

All Night Sinnin’ is a bold, invigorating, improvisational and amplified jolt of post-Hendrix, après-funk, neo-Led Zep, super-hyphenated blues-rock. Although these thirteen original recordings are heavily bass laden, they are also performed with a rare lightness and dexterity by this experienced, conventionally-arranged but less-than-conventional sounding four-piece.

In the main this is powerful, vibrant and-yet-unshowy stuff but there’s always a touch of tenderness and delicacy to the playing. And in the case of "40 Nights" there are five stirring minutes of controlled, graceful unfiltered emotion – beautiful, unfiltered and heart-wrenching stuff.

Just make sure you get the right Idle Hands – there are other Idle Hands in America. Even though our Idle Hands have endured relatively modest recognition, I doubt the other Idle Hands are a match for their unrestrained, zesty and mature blend of funk, blues, rock and experimentation. Jonathan Blackstaff




 
The Idle Hands have been out-on-the-road together for twenty years, and this is their latest release. The whole CD harks back to British Blues circa 1967, showing musical influences from before and after that date, whilst at the same time being fresh and relevant in a new century. It contains a myriad of shades of the Blues, and straight out of the hands of four class musicians, with a lot of musical dirt under their fingernails.

The CD opens with the powerful Blues-rocker “I Ain’t Broken”, an infusion of Hendrix and Led Zeppelin into a new musical tincture of sound. “The Stroll” is a twelve-bar Blues-rocker that swaggers its way into dramatic rock harmonies and guitar riffs. “Things Move On” takes the tempo down into a Blues ballad with a hint of folk rock. Phil Allen’s gritty vocal interspersed with his interpretive harmonica playing is taken-up and further elucidated by David Robinson’s emotive electro-acoustic slide guitar. “Mississippi”, like its namesake is a Blues-rock ballad that flows through beautifully making your feet tap and body sway in a metronomic groove to Paul Heydon and Jamie Burns rhythmic drum and bass.

The Idle Hands have always been an impressive band out live, but this CD marks the zenith of their recorded work to date and a good example of their top class pedigree. Carol Borrington


 

Discography


The albums below are sold out and no longer available to buy.


 
  • 1998 - 2004 Box Set

    Released 2004

    • Phil Allen - Vocals
    • Dave Robinson - Guitars
    • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
    • Simon Evans - Drums
  • A Touch of the Blues

    Released 2004

    • Phil Allen - Vocals
    • Dave Robinson - Guitars
    • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
    • Simon Evans - Drums
  • Blues n' Booze Live

    Released 2001

    • Phil Allen - Vocals
    • Dave Robinson - Guitars
    • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
    • Simon Evans - Drums
  • The Devil Makes Work

    Released 2000

    Guest Musicians

    • Phil Allen - Vocals
    • Dave Robinson - Guitars
    • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
    • Simon Evans - Drums
    • Jon Stoppard - Honky Tonk piano
    • Pete Armitage - Blues Harp
  • Feels Like Blues

    Released 1998

    • Phil Allen - Vocals
    • Dave Robinson - Guitars
    • Jamie Burns - Bass & Backing Vocals
    • Simon Evans - Drums

LIVE REVIEW

"An excellent set of original songs...a superb frontman...phenomenal guitar solos transfixing the audience...
a standing ovation"