Italian blues outlet, Macallè Blues reviews Fiona Boyes’ Box & Dice:
“In recent years Australia has expressed some real blues talent…One of these talents is surely Fiona Boyes.… Box & Dice represents an instrumental experiment that, besides her usual guitars, let some handicraft cigar-box guitars (built by Shayne Soall from Oz Blues and Roots Music Store) step out front. Boyes plays those guitars using bottlenecks drawn by different small liqueur bottles. And, above all, she uses a rare handicraft baritone National Reso-lectric guitar too that has only one twin sample in the world, who knows if it’s “good” or “evil”. The result is this agile cd recorded with a classic and slender trio with guitar, double-bass and drums. Fiona Boyes, here, mixes up different styles and skilfully passes from the Delta to the swamp and Piedmont blues, from Texas shuffle to Chicago post war blues. No surprise that Boyes, who’s provided with a strong songwriting, has been nominated for the Blues Music Awards and has been the first woman, as well as the first Australian to win the International Blues Challenge in 2003. On this cd, named after one of her cigar-box guitars, Fiona Boyes explores, besides the quoted styles, the various sonorities of her guitars almost as if she would choose the right personality and tone much proper for the different songs. … In the middle of a generous dose of original tunes, there is also room for a handful of covers among which you can find a muscular version of Smokestack Lightning and a persuasive, sensual Easy Baby, respectively drawn by the sacred books of Howlin’ Wolf and Magic Sam.” —G.R., Macallè Blues
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