It’s been almost nine years since The Tea Party’s surprise reunion and just over five since The Ocean at the End swept away any doubt that any magic had been lost during their time apart.
The trio have been drip-feeding the release of this EP since late last year’s release of the title track. Black River is a stripped back, rollicking quiet/loud rock cut that cuts to the creative heart of the Canadian trio: rock and roll, with a stomping, descending riff and a slashing guitar solo. Way Way Down is an upbeat blues-flavoured rocker with mouth harp and a huge swirling organ part, and, with a catalogue where Led Zeppelin has always been a touchstone, The Tea Party work their own magic on the Grand Masters’ Out on the Tiles, a suitably fitting inclusion here.
The Tea Party has always been a band to move forward while also looking back, and with its combination of hard rocking moments, lush orchestrations, dark mysticism and snappy songwriting, Black River holds the flavour of earlier recordings like Transmission but with the immediacy of Seven Circles. With a nod to their most obvious influence, this EP is almost like a highlights package from The Tea Party, dripping with portent of even more impressive things to come. From a band who is always great, this is excellent.
- Black River
- Way Way Down
- So Careless
- Out on the Tiles
- Blood Moon Rising (Watty’s Song)