The Greig Taylor Band

 

The band received a Song of the Year 2023 award for ‘Bleeding Love‘ from the album ‘The Light

The Greig Taylor Band is built round Scottish soul singer Greig Taylor, a vocalist whose life experiences help bring gravitas to his self penned songs and gritty soulful phrasing.

The combination of his vocal flexibility, meaningful narratives, real feel and a scintillating band help reshape the traditional genres of rock, blues, soul and even Latino to his own ends.

The result is a song driven album ‘The Light’, which by turns is exhilarating, reflective and sprinkled with potential radio gems.

He also references Americana on a power chord ballad called ‘Three Chords And The Truth’. The song builds towards a repeated hypnotic hook which is delivered as a mantra over Brian McFie’s jangling guitar lines and David Cowan’s Chuck Leavell
style piano embellishments.

The steadfast rhythm section of bassist Nelson McFarlane and drummer Dave Cantwell provide equal amounts of intuitive drive and restraint, which also gives the album as a whole its dynamic feel.

Taylor phrases empathetically on the hypnotic groove of ‘Tears In My Beer,’ and he shifts from being mournful to optimistically in love on the soulful ballad ‘Bleeding Love’.

His husky timbre glues together the John Fogerty influenced title track and the southern soul of ‘Destination’, a song you could imagine Joe Cocker would have liked.

And if comparisons with Cocker come easily, Taylor wastes no time in nailing his own DNA on the opening swagger of ‘Real Born Winner’.

Built round a heartfelt autobiographical narrative, he attacks it with real grit and no little emotion, as he effectively delivers a musical mission statement: “I’m a real born winner and I’m not gonna waste no more of your time.”

He adds: “I got rehabilitated I see the life that I want.”

And in doing so he delivers his own career high point on the horn-led bluster of ‘Born To Love Her’, a previously released duet with R&B Gospel singer Earl Thomas, topped by a killer hook. Much like Thomas, Taylor dips into traditional genres to find
his own voice.

He then surprises us as he belatedly heads into Latino territory, firstly as a subtle influence on ‘Set The World On Fire’ and then on the full blown ‘I Should’ve Known’.

The latter is an exhilarating triumph on which his rapid phrasing finds the perfect foil in David Cowan’s Salsa style piano with a mesmerising funky undertow.

The Hammond-led title track rounds off the perfect vehicle for a versatile soulful singer who pours himself into the project with no safety net in sight, always the litmus
test of a great soulful singer. ****

Review by Pete Feenstra