Roadhouse the band

Roadhouse the band



This Sunday found Roadhouse at Bedford Esquires. Ths Sunday afternoon weekly show rammed full of musicians, musos and the core live music support that you will find at Skegness and other Festivals all over the Country. If like me you’ve followed Roadhouse over the years, then you will realise it’s like following 2 Bands. The first set Band, tight, controlled, playing the songs fiercely but accurately, like a well oiled machine. The second set Band is more like wild animal, spitting, growling and finding its own path with an air of super confident experimentation.Sections of controlled feedback and powerful solos segway into well known and popular themes and then dissapear off of the fretboard with great speed.

Astride the gothic, Americana wall of sound, you’ll find Mandie.G an enigma if ever, veering from a screaming banshee to impossible notes with moments of great tenderness. Sometimes, she looks lost, insecure. I’m not sure what else. I could watch her all day. Gary.B quietly runs the whole thing with Danny Gwillym tearing up the fretboard and he was well on form this afternoon. There were standing ovations and cheers for many of his solos. Roger Hunt on the drums and Bill Hobley on the bass hold the whole thing together while others catch the eye with some of the solos and vocals. Highlights included their emotional rendition of ‘Slip Away’ from their ‘No Place To Hide’ album. This was dedicated to the late, great Jules Fothergill who played in Roadhouse for over 4 years. The epic Dark Angel, where Gary held the bragging rites on guitar for a change and the classic Voodoo Queen from their Blues Highway sojourn and Danny and Mandie in the crowd. 2 Encores

With 11 CD’s released, every show is different. However, there is finally word of new material on its way. I have no idea where this one is going to go, but am interested to find out


Roadhouse live at Esquires Oct 2019 - Photo by Steve Dulieu
Roadhouse live at Esquires Oct 2019 – Photo by Steve Dulieu

Get Ready To Rock Review of Roadhouse 25 Years and Beyond – 17th December 2018 – Pete Feenstra

Self Release [Release date 04.01.19 – Second batch]

There can be few independently run bands that have made it to their 25th anniversary with consistently good new material, but Roadhouse is no ordinary band.

Originally a roots-rock and Americana outfit with Southern rock edges, they kept the latter influence, but broadened their musical sweep into blues tinged roots-rock. And under the leadership of prodigious songwriter, guitarist and vocalist Gary Boner they have built up an impressive cannon of work -13 albums and counting – as well as establishing themselves on the Euro festival circuit.

No surprise then, that their anniversary album ’25 Years And Counting’ (their first self release outside their usual Krossborder label), boasts some 25 tracks with over 30 musicians, including one of former Family and Streetwalkers guitarist Charlie Whitney’s last recorded efforts.

Guitarist Gary Boner, bassist Bill Hobley and drummer Roger Hunt remain from the original line-up, and its Hunt and his wife Lou who tackle the thorny problem of what to leave out, as they strike a good balance between the band’s earlier rootsy line-up and their more recent rock driven approach.

The album opens with the 1995 country influenced ‘Ain’t Coming Back’, which features original vocalist Robert A. Roberts. There’s a notable contrast between the band’s early style and the later big screen vista of ‘Gods And Highways And Old Guitars’, a showcase for vocalist Mandie G, on a song that borders on the anthemic. Then there’s the riff-driven ZZ Top influenced boogie of ‘Blues Motel’, which finds both guitarist Danny Gwilym (China Town/Shogun etc) and vocalist Mandie G at the top of their game.

The more recent efforts point to an upswing in creativity, with ‘Hell On Wheels’ being a guitar-driven piece full of sparkling harmonies, while the sub-Zeppelin riff that opens ‘Queen Of The Mountains’ gives way to the band’s other stellar vocalist Sarah Harvey Smart. The slow burning rock ballad leads into the acoustic/electro ‘Turn Your Face Into The Wind’, a perfect bookend to an impressive musical journey that illuminates the depth of Boner’s songwriting.

It’s worth dwelling on his songs which have noir quality both in terms of their narratives and feel. There’s the jangling guitars and harmony vocals of ‘When Mountains Fall’ and Charlie Whitney’s magical mandolin on the harp-led ‘Back Streets’, which is a beguiling 7 minutes and 36 seconds worth of roots rock with Roberts on lead vocals.

There’s also the funky groove of ‘Fire Walking’, The Outlaws influenced southern rock of ‘Desert Sky’and the magisterial ‘Voodoo Queen’, which along with ‘The Big Easy’ digs deep into New Orleans folklore, for an up tempo funk rock groove of the highest order.

‘No Place To Hide’ finds the band rocking with lashings of slide guitar, while the moody ‘Slip Away’ evokes the doomy lyrics perfectly.

‘Couldn’t Get To Sleep Last Night’ on the other hand, has a West coast sweep and evokes Jefferson Airplane with its folk rock harmonies.

And if a compilation sinks or swims with the benefit of an essential flow, the band achieves that with the guitar juggernaut of ‘Dark Angel’ which is nicely juxtaposed by the hard rocking intensity of their American radio hit ‘Telling Lies’, complete with slide guitar and breathless call and response vocals.

The more you listen the more you marvel at how the band has managed to keep its standards over two and half decades. There’s enough diversity to keep interest levels high, check out the deft acoustic guitar on ‘Mexican Nights’ for example. The intensity levels and ripping solos will keep any rock fans happy, particularly on tracks such as ‘Last Train Home’ and ‘Preacher Man’, both of which could easily have come from Lynyrd Skynyrd’s back catalogue.

Roadhouse clearly favours the slow build up of songs like ‘Blues Highway’ which is the musical equivalent of a slow burning fuse that you know will eventually explode.

And while it’s probably true to say that Roadhouse’s career has never really exploded, this compilation sends out 25 great reasons while there will always be a market for a fine twin guitar driven band with versatile vocalists and memorable songs. Here’s to the next 25. ****

Review by Pete Feenstra


Had they existed during the second wave of British blues in the 1960’s Roadhouse might have been spoken of and written about in the same sentences as the likes of Chicken Shack, Free, Savoy Brown and Wishbone Ash.

New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

Instead, they thrive as an unfaltering act of a kind that leaves ’em wanting more at a blues-and-rock weekender or during evenings devoted to the stuff in evenings in a club near you. They fire on all cylinders in the studio, too, as demonstrated on an album inspired by Detroit’s decline as a centre of industrial enterprise.

Composed principally by singing co-lead guitarist Gary Boner, its music lives mainly in ear catching riffs supporting such as the title song and ‘This House Is On Fire’. Standing out, too, on first encounter are ‘Night of the Gun’ (albeit. owing a little homage to Bowie’s Suffragette City)

Perhaps it is flawed slightly by programming whereby ‘Midnight Rain’ is followed by ‘Blues Highway’ (heard in radio edit form later) of similar tempo and also featuring the female chorale, but otherwise City of Decay is a triumph of both consolidation and development
Adam Clayson

A prime slice of Americana blues with the issues of Detroit’s motor industry (The album artwork says it all in style) by a Band that make fine use of 3 different vocalists, who all take lead and harmonise fantastically

New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

This House Is On Fire is a splendid opener with a touch of Southern boogie, while City of Decay has a wonderful slow burning atmospheric start and the vocal harmonies work overtime before throwing in a nod to the classic Cat Scratch fever riff and there is plenty of Thin Lizzy style two part guitar work.

The longest of several epics on the album is the stunning, soulful slow blues of Blues Highway, with the girls Mandie and Sarah taking turns to lay down the style, while the guitars of Gary and Danny throw in plenty of cool blues guitar licks (There is also a radio edit of this cracker on the album)

A mix of prog rock and a little Richie Blackmore guitar work (Even mentions “The Man in Black” in the lyrics) on Midnight Rain, a downbeat rocker with Mandie putting a Stevie Nicks style tone on her vocals. Sarah has her lead vocal time in the spotlight on the spirited rocker Queen of the Mountain and a soulful rock voice it is as well, and the pace goes up a notch on the toe tapping Night of the Gun, where all three vocalists take turns.
Plenty of epics on this polished slice of Americana style rock and the vocals throughout are top draw AL


New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

Translated from Belgian:
What do you mean Blues on the Highway?. In the case of Roadhouse the highway simply is the Blues. In fact Gary Boner’s quintet has built a real body of work singing and musically evoking a blacker side of blue; sin, darkness and other signs of decadence and disintegration to society (City of Decay, viz Detroit) as well as to the individual (Midnight Rain). For this album the Band wrote another batch of originals, usually mid-tempo to slow, carried by the rhythm section, cross-cut with a heavy guitar. Topping it all is Gary Boner’s rambling, stumbling and strutting dark voice underlined by the Bands two female singers providing the high notes and sense of chorus and melody. Home-made blues and rock is at the core, with lots of roots growing and glowing all around it.

Album: City Of Decay
Label: Krossborder
Tracks: 10

New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

Roadhouse, Roadhouse, Roadhouse where do I start. Well they have been plying their trade now for nigh on twenty years now here in the UK. They are the the brainchild of singer/songwriter/guitarist Gary Boner. Their style is rooted very much that gritty blues rock style.

“City Of Decay” is the band’s thirteenth release and it is definitely not unlucky thirteen. The album is very much rooted in Americana and a very dark Americana at that. Dark themes and lyrics weave with gritty sometimes jangling guitar riffs, all over laid with Gary’s deep gravelly vocals. Making it a very interesting journey through the dark underbelly of the Land Of The Free.

The album opens with This House Is On Fire a upbeat number which somehow reminds of Canadian Rockers Northern Pikes. A track full of tight guitar riffs that swirl around the lyrics with ease. You are then plunged into darker territories with the next track City Of Decay. A dark menacing track that conjures up images of that once great temple to the motor car the broken city of Detroit. You can just visualize the broken buildings and rusting hulks slowly returning to nature and the inhabitants trying to make the most of their lives amongst the dark underbelly of the American Dream.

A change of mood for the next song King Of The starts out as a tight blues rock number held together with the clock beat of the drums. Then it spreads it wings with a Lynyrd Skynyrd style guitar solo. Up next is Blues Highway and gone are the gravelly vocals of Gary Boner in comes a voice that just drips in the blues Mandie G. The track has blues written right through the middle of it. Mandie’s vocals conjures up images of long dessert highways that stretch for miles and smoke filled bars that are darkly lit and smell of whisky and smoke. The guitar riffs are like a open top Cadillac Eldorado screaming down the dusty highways.

We have Mandie G taking us forward with the next track Midnight Rain, a classic blues rock anthem that would not be out of place if Stevie Nicks was singing it. Up next is Night Of The Gun. A track that deals with hatred in all its forms. It is a hard edged track with guitar riffs that would not be out of place on a Gary Moore album. You also get the contrasting vocals of Gary with his gravelly voice and the smooth voice of Mandie G.

Mandie G carries on with the vocal duties for Queen Of The Mountain another track that is full of dark images and darker guitar riffs laid down with passion and power. Next is another version of Blues Highway Radio Edit This version is shorter and a little more up beat than the dark blues offering from earlier, it as the title suggests aimed at the American Rock Radio shows on the FM dial.

It is with a heavy heart that this journey through a brokern America comes to an end with Turn Your Face Into The Wind. Gary Boner returns to bid us farewell with anthemic road trip of a song. That screams of broken dreams, long desolate highways and the dark side of the American Dream.

So it is time to sum things up. If you like your rock and blues dark with a hard edge to it then this album is definitely for you. If you don’t then give it a go like I and like me you might just fall in love with the album.

Andy Chamberlain

Krossborder Rekords – BLUES MATTERS REVIEW – Summer Edition 2016

New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

Performing for over 20 years Roadhouse is lead by singer/songwriter Gary Boner. City Of Decay is their 13th release and is definitely more ambitious than anything previously recorded by this busy high profile band. There are 6 co-writes here from twin lead guitarists Boner and Danny Gwilym. Boner’s renowned gravelly vocals are throughout with superb lead and backing vocals provided by the 2 illustrious ladies Sarah Harvey Smart and Mandie Graham, with the rock solid rhythm section consisting of bassist Bill Hobley and drummer Rodger Hunt. The opening track This House Is On Fire is a catchy, guitar driven, uplifting tune with raspy Boner vocals. This is followed by the title track City Of Decay (Boner/Gwilym) written about the downfall of Detroit after the ‘Big 6’ car manufactures withdrew. Americana/blues/rock King Of The Streets continues the guitar rock feel with a solid beat. Then the epic 11 minute long doubly reprised Blues Highway (Boner) (repeated with a 4.5 minute radio edit) and inspired loosely on the book by Richard Knight. A truly beautiful and timeless blues number written and performed exactly as you’d expect a contemporary blues track to sound like. It’s infused with sultry female vocals, both taking turns to lead and with some full-on guitar solos by Boner and Gwilym taking centre stage at times and playing some real deep heartfelt blues. Boner also enthrals with his whammy bar led solo as it drifts back to the beautiful smooth bluesy female vocals. Next up its Midnight Rain (Boner/Graham) Mandie G on lead vocals here and reminiscent of early Stevie Nicks, again deep dark lyrics about lost love but it has plenty of sparkle and lush slide guitar accompaniment from Danny. Another tight arrangement with Mandie on lead vocals is Queen Of The Mountain, it’s a slide driven rocker. Turn Your Face Into The Wind (Boner/Gwilym) is more Americana and begins with acoustic guitar leading to an awesome electric guitar solo finish, again the female vocals are strong and beautiful on this one. It’s a real end of the night special.


City of Decay – Get Ready to Rock – Top Music Website Review by Pete Feenstra

New Cover by Martin Cook
The Great NEW CD Cover by Martin Cook

Krossborder [Release date 15.07.16]

In a career spanning over 20 years and 13 or so albums,UK band Roadhouse have made a virtue out of being a broad musical church. They started life as an Americana and alt.Country guitar led outfit, before gravitating towards roots-rock and latterly blues-rock. ‘City of Decay’ places the emphasis firmly on the weight of their songs, while this superbly produced album captures both the band’s natural spark and their musical excellence.

Roadhouse ‘s founder member and principal songwriter Gary Boner is arguably best known for his dark narratives which reflect the underbelly of the American heartland. He draws on a combination of history, geography, legends, myths and popular culture – spanning film, literature and of course music – to conjure up a set of wide vista, filmic narratives at the hear of some deep grooves.

The combination of interwoven lyrics and intricate guitar lines makes for the kind of potent musical landscape to be found on songs such as the doubly reprised ‘Blues Highway’.

‘City Of Decay’ mines familiar themes with jangling guitar lines and showcases the trademark vocals of Mandy G. and Sarah Harvey Smart, who smooth out Gary’s rough-edged vocals. And even in those moments when they do rock out, as on a the borrowed AC/DC riff of ‘Queen Of The Mountain’, the tight arrangement never wavers in its focus on Sarah’s lead vocal and the band’s musical minutiae.

At times the band sounds almost restrained, but the album’s lyrical and musical nuances reveal themselves with repeated plays. It’s all there on the broad sweep and lightness of touch of the opening track ‘This House Is On Fire’, on which the guitar solo gives the song an uplifting feel.

Then there’s first of two version of ‘Blues Highway’, on which the sinewy guitar solo gradually moves centre stage, as the ensemble bliss’s away contentedly in the background. There is a belated pay-off of course, as Boner provides the whammy bar led solo resolution.

And if Boner always seems obsessed with the dark side of society and metaphoric decay, there’s plenty of sparkling instrumentation and uplifting melodies to lift the gloom

The strongest message this album sends out is simply that Roadhouse is not only the splendid sum of it’s parts, but all the band members are encouraged to stamp their own personalities on the album. This applies as much to the songs – Boner shares 6 co-writes with guitarist Gwilym – as it does to the production which is split three ways. There’s always a portal for solos that act as an audio exclamation mark rather than an meaningless adjunct, while the vocals are always at the centre of the mix, as the redoubtable rhythm section provides plenty of light and shade and drive.

The title track, drips with desolation, but sets a high standard for the rest of the album, with a slow burn predicated on a subtle percussive pattern that locks tight into an acoustic/electric led groove. A subtle pause and sudden chord change acts like a spring cool before dual harmony guitar lines lead us back into the groove and a melodic solo.

Mandie G. hogs the spotlight on the brooding ‘Midnight Rain’, a song that benefits from the kind of pre-chorus lift that separates the best songs from the rest.

‘King Of The Streets’ features a growled Boner vocal over Roger Hunt’s tic-toc percussion as the guitars bubble underneath. The track finally explodes into a melodic southern rock guitar break over Hobley’s beautifully nuanced bass notes. It’s an excellent example of a road tested band playing at the top of their game.

There’s an unexpected extra radio edit of ‘Blues Highway’ before the anthemic ‘Turn Your Face Into The Wind’ perfectly bookends an excellent album. ‘City Of Decay’ brings a new found maturity to an already weighty musical cannon.

City of Decay – Liverpool Sound and Vision – Liverpool Culture & Entertainment Website – June 2016

Roadhouse, City Of Decay. Album Review.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10

When a city dies, when it crumbles into dust and powdered filth, it takes on the spectral and the ghost like white shade of a vampire being shown the first chinks of dawn; the vampire and the dead city, the kind of allusion to which only the last person alive can understand when all around them is the tattered remains of a faded and one beautiful glory.

The world is full of such places, some forgotten in ancient history, several only too fresh in the mind, a few having been pulled back from the depths of Government disinterest and offering a salvation, some, like Detroit, a growing graveyard of rusting metal and obsolete dreams; the City of Decay now only a place where dystopian inspiration gathers pace.

Roadhouse’s interest in the crumbling edifice of the once proud American dream is simple, it is the stark reminder that music and life are so intertwined that without either being heard, the merry laugh of a happy child, the guitar solo that brings home memories of a first dynamic kiss, then there is no life, there is no hope.

Rust is in the air in Detroit, but the hope and ambition of a band really getting underneath the skin of their fans lives long and is multiplying with each lengthy stride, each mile placed down upon the road, by the tremendous Roadhouse. This is a group of musicians to whom Rust and decay are but words to be found in a dictionary or in the emotional feeling towards the system that has allowed a once thriving and forceful city to die, to be long past it could be argued, the possibility of resurrection.

The vocals of Sarah Harvey-Smart and Mandie G draw confidence, illustrate a stunning intensity in depth that is impossible to ignore and one that captivates the listener into wanting more, to feel the engine of the band rev and roar like a Mustang, it is a feeling that the band are happy to offer.

With tracks such as King Of The Streets, Midnight Rain, the excellent Queen of the Mountain and the superb album title track, City of Decay, hanging in the air, this is an album built on strength and muscle and it is one that understands completely just what it means to have hope, even when all around you is coming apart, the engine stalling and the gas having run out; City of Decay is a force of nature that will not pause and purrs along with thunder in its heart.

Ian D. Hall

Roadhouse Live At The Colne National Festival of R&B, August 2015 – Blues Matters
Review, Blues Matters, December 2015 – January 2016 by Bernie Stone

Next up was Roadhouse. This is a very professional , well presented and entertaining Band and there is always something happening on stage including lots of tongue in cheek gyrations from the glamorous young ladies who front the band (And additional posturing from the somewhat older members of the band who play the guitars). While these antics may not be popular with everyone, both ladies can certainly sing and the band is full of top musicians. I understand it was there 7th consecutive year at Colne and they certainly know how to put on a good show. I particularly enjoyed Blues Highway, a sultry blues number sung by the appropriately sultry young ladies taking alternative lead vocals

Climax - Photo by Steve Dulieu
Climax – Photo by Steve Dulieu



Roadhouse Live At The Great British Rock & Blues Festival – Skegness – 23rd-25th January 2015 – Blues Matters by Bernie Stone
1. The Whole afternoon in JAKS was an extended Jam Session lead by the – ‘Resident’ Band for the last few years Roadhouse, and featuring a cast of thousands including the bands from the previous (Friday) night and many more besides. This was immense fun for all but I could not attempt to describe it in this review.

2. On the Sunday night JAKS returned to its usual energetic Roadhouse vibe complete with the band of the same name. Roadhouse have become a regular participant in the Skegness weekend and you could see why. The fit in perfectly, complete with two energetic and attractive young lady singers, writhing in front of a delighted audience and I suspect and equally delighted Band. Two excellent lead guitarists kept everything on the boil. What was there to dislike?. this is a really good Band ideal for the venue, the young ladies choreography reminded me of Pans People and the rest of the Band reminded me of four first class male musicians enjoying themselves. However, its all a matter of taste.

Roadhouse Live at the Cambridge Rock Festival 7-10/8/2014 – Record Collector – Tim Beckersley/Mark Taylor – a short but sweet review

Roadhouse entertained with fun Americana bliss and stunning female vocalists……

Roadhouse Live at CRF 2014
Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

Roadhouse Live at The Cambridge Rock Festival (CRF) Sunday August 10th 2014 – Get Ready To Rock

Sarah & Danny & CRF
Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix
With some overlap between the stages, I hot-footed it to the blues tent to see Roadhousein full swing. Though only introduced to me relatively recently, they are a long running hidden gem of the British rock scene, mixing blues-rock with mainman Gary Boner’s fascination with the dark side of the American heartland, and the crowd were already stoked as I came in for the epic ‘Dark Angel’ – both girl singers giving their leather lunged all, and the more straight ahead raunchy rock of ‘Telling Lies’, and ‘Preacher Man’ with Gary and Danny Gwilim swapping guitar solos.

Danny & Gary at CRF 2014
Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

Roadhouse Live at The Cambridge Rock Festival – Sunday 10th August 2014 – – Author: Liz Medhurst

Roadhouse Live at CRF 2014
Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

Photo by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

“Over to Stage 2 to catch the end of Roadhouse’s set. This was an absolute corker, and had everyone dancing and just enjoying being in the moment. This had been a feature of the entire weekend – no surprise really with the harvest full moon in Aquarius being perfect conditions to gather with kindred spirits and networks and experience the transcendent power of music”.

– Short but very sweet – Gary

Roadhouse Live at the Cambridge Rock festival – Sunday 10th August 2014, Classic rock Journalist Dave Ling’s Blog/Diary

Roadhouse live at CRF 2014
Picture by John Bull at Facebook page Rockerpix

A little frustratingly, the sets of the Main Stage’s special guest, JØRN LANDE and ROADHOUSE overlapped. We had planned to watch as much as possible of Lande’s set and head over to the Rotary Rocks Blues Stage to catch the beginning of Roadhouse. Alas, Jørn was late arriving onstage – something to do with demanding a full-sized mirror for his dressing room, I was told by another of the groups on the bill – so we cut our losses and made sure of grabbing some more drinks in time for what turned out to be a superb set display from Roadhouse (not to be confused with the short-lived act formed by Pete Willis on his expulsion from Def Leppard). No disrespect intended to the band, whose arrival at 8pm happened to coincide with the optimum ‘refreshment levels’ of just about everybody on site… which isn’t to say one must be bladdered to enjoy them, but it certainly helped! The contrasting vocal techniques of Sarah Harvey-Smart and Mandie G were used to maximum effect on ‘The Big Easy’ and ‘Blues Motel’, and just about the whole tent boogied along, drinks in hand, to the likes of ‘Too Tired To Pray’, ‘Hell On Wheels’ and ‘Telling Lies’, ‘Preacher Man’ ending things on a rousing, ‘Freebird’-type note. I’ve seen Roadhouse on several previous occasions and this was by far the best. Yes, my old mate Danny Gwilym of Tokyo Blade/Shogun fame is one of their guitar players but that has Sweet FA to do with this assessment. Their latest album, ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’, is a great start-off point for those of an inquisitive nature.

Roadhouse – 1st 23rd Anniversary Gig – The Beaverwood Club Chislehurst – 24th July 2014
Blues Blog Review on BlogSpot by Darren Weale

Not Roadhouse, but Pete Feenstra (centre) booked them
It is unusual to write a post in the Blog of the Blues without a photo of the subject. Or much detail about it.

This, though, is all Roadhouse’s fault. A British Blues band that drew the author to the Beaverwood Club in Chislehurst in Bromley, London, for a nice night out without any reviewing or photographing to do. Just music to listen to with a clear mind and a clear conscience.

Sadly, Roadhouse were too good to pass without comment, so here we are, non-existent notes ready to use. Roadhouse is a 6 piece band including two talented lady singers (Mandie G and Sarah), and guitarist-vocalist in Gary Boner.

They play a distinctly Southern-US brand of Rock-Blues, with sections of song often picking up the sounds of ZZ Top, Skinny Molly/Lynyrd Skynyrd, and even Thin Lizzy. Songs like Blues Motel burned themselves into the memories of the audience and closing track Preacher was so good that listening to other music on the car on the way home would have been second best.

Roadhouse live at the Beaverwood - Photo by Steve Dulieu
Roadhouse live at the Beaverwood – Photo by Steve Dulieu

The ladies of the band belted the songs out, but the band’s interaction with itself and audience were also a pleasure to watch. If you’re a general fan of good music, go and see Roadhouse.If you’re a writer, don’t count on having a night off….

The photo? (Was a photo at the top of this blog) Beaverwood (and more) promoter Pete Feenstra flanked by two of the trio Moreland & Arbuckle from the US at an excellent recent gig at the club (when a camera was present and notes were taken).

Roadhouse are a reminder that when it comes to music, the British can often stand tall with our neighbours across the Pond.
Posted 2 days ago by Blogger
Labels: Pete Feenstra Roadhouse Skinny Molly Thin Lizzy ZZ Top

Roadhouse Live at the National Festival for Blues & Rock, Skegness 2014 – Article in Classic Rock Blues Magazine out in March 2014

The intergenerational Roadhouse manage to play 20 original songs and incredibly manage to never repeat a number in either of their packed out, marathon 4 hour Blues Jam in JAKS, or in their own set later on the Sunday. The majestic seep of ‘Hell On Wheels’ and the dual guitar lead Blues Motel, reminds us that blues can be a catalytic springboard for so much more.
Pete Feenstra

Take a bow - Photo by Steve Dulieu
Take a bow – Photo by Steve Dulieu

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – Blues In Britain Magazine (Oct- Dec 2013) – John Mitchell

Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook
Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook

Roadhouse return with their latest set of rocking tunes in their usual Americana meets the blues style. On their 11th album leader Gary Boner wrote all 10 tracks with a little help with Band Members on four of them. Roadhouse has always had strong female vocalists who are a great support for Gary’s gruff tone and the present incumbents are Mandie.G and Sarah Harvey-Smart. A second feature of the Band is a twin guitar attack and Danny Gwilym shares duties with Gary, longstanding rhythm section Bill Hobley (Bass) and Roger Hunt (Drums) completing the line-up.

The album opens impressively with ‘Hell On Wheels’, a super rocker with a great central riff, archetypal Roadhouse material. When the girls harmonies soar over the chorus you have to think of Grace Slick and Jefferson Airplane in their heyday. The longest track ‘Skinwalker’ uses the native American Imagery, the Skinwalker being something akin to a vampire. The title track has Mandie in the lead and plenty of wah wah in the solo and Sarah also has a lead on her co-write, ‘Slowdown’ a fast shuffle about a girl rejecting an over amorous suitor. Other impressive cuts include a pair of New Orleans related songs in ‘Katrina’, a wistful balled about the fateful hurricane. and ‘The Big Easy’ on which the twin guitars chime out together to introduce a dark portrayal of the city’s backstreets. Closing track ‘Sinner’ starts slowly but heats up into one of those widescreen epic songs that Roadhouse do so well. with the female chorus etching itself into the listener’s head while the frenetic guitar see’s the song out.
Fans of the Band will know what to expect but for anyone new to the Band this is a pretty good album to start from.
John Mitchell

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – Maverick National Country & Roots Music Magazine – October 2013 – Nick Dalton

Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook
Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook

Roots at its best with more than a touch of rock.
Ahh, who could not love an album that manages to come up with a mystical mix like that in its title, echoing the spirit of Neil Gaiman’s novel, American Gods. And this is Roadhouse, Britain’s finest and most enigmatic roots rockers. The music does not fit into any category but somehow manages to be a dark coming together of country-rock and blues in a way that no one else manages. Main man Gary Boner is still there penning lyrics about everything in the title and he and co-guitarist Danny Gwiliym switch between lead and rhythm in a jangling, throbbing rocking barrage. Sometimes there’s a slide guitar moan, sometimes full on rock

Where Roadhouse really differ is they have 3 female lead vocalists, Mandie.G, Sarah Harvey smart and Suzie.D. Each take on a lead voice, sometimes a lone voice (more than a touch of Janis Joplin), sometimes a lead harmony trio. They spar with Boner over a juddering wash of guitars then switch to a choral backdrop, underpinned by the bands long time rhythm section, Roger Hunt on drums and Bill Hobley on Bass.

Roadhouse specialise in long expansive mood tracks, like Skinwalker with its hint of an Indian drumbeat, and Sinner. The superb title track features multi-female lead vocals, while other titles – Spirits Across The Water, The Big Easy and Hell on Wheels – deliver everything they promise. A very special Band.
Nick Dalton
Four Stars

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – Blues Matters Magazine – National Blues Magazine – September 2013
Roadhouse refuse to change lanes in their latest excellent release. Gary Boner’s vision of a solid and uncompromising Blues-Rock band remains uncompromised and wonderfully intact. The rhythms are incessant, the lyrical themes are familiar – dark and all-pervading sheer bloody mindedness abound. From the first backing chant of Hell On Wheels through the Wishbone Ash-like twin guitar solo of I Can’t Say No the pace is unrelenting. What is new and refreshing is the increased prominence given to the female singers Mandie G, Sarah Harvey-Smart and Suzie D, not just as excellent support to Boner’s gruff and menacing voice, but as soloists, for example in the superb title track. Katrina is appropriately sombre and The Big Easy has the groove of Alannah Myles’ Black Velvet but that song’s moody reflection is replaced by sexual tension and superb guitar soloing. The album weighs in at 10 tracks and 55 minutes, and each tune is allowed to expand and breathe. It is Roadhouse’s use of repetition that increases the unsettling and subliminal effect, for example in Slow Down. The standout cut is the call-and-response Spirits Across The Water, a powerful and magnificent song. The riff in Blues Motel puts Black Sabbath to shame. The suitably confessional yet rebellious Sinner closes what is Roadhouse’s most complete and finest offering yet

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars Review – Rock Society Magazine – September 2013

This is a strong release with a couple of absolute gems. Roadhouse have a style all of their own with their mix of male and female vocals and a combination of Blues/Southern rock and Americana (You would swear they were American). The opening number is important and they have chose one of the strongest on the album, Hell on Wheels, a lively blues rocker for the job, fantastic vocal harmonies (A real strong point of the album), a catchy chorus and explosive guitar work.

Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook
Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook

One of the most unusual and atmospheric numbers is the stylish Skinwalker’. Downbeat ,moody, mysterious, and haunting it is choc full of fabulous guitar sounds and slightly experimental in feel; as soon as I played it I wanted to hear it again.
‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ is another highlight and if you close your eyes you can almost picture Route 66 and racks of guitars and for me the lead vocals have a touch of Stevie Nicks about them (For me not a bad thing at all)
My other two favourite tracks on this release are ‘The Big Easy’, along the lines of the Alannah Myles hit Black Velvet, it has fabulous sultry lyrics and amazing guitar work – and also on the sultry side, with sizzling sexy lyrics (superb female lead vocal) is ‘Slowdown’ which is sure to make you feel hot under the collar.
I really enjoyed this album which is not your standard blues release at all and is all the more interesting for it.

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars Review – Classic Rock Magazine – October 2013
Appropriately Roadhouse sound as if they could pass muster with even the most fastidious Route 66 barfly. They are British, but your wouldn’t think it with this album drilling deep into Americana with its driving sound and harmony stacked songs,

Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook
Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook

that take in film noir (Sinner) and Native American ghost stories (Skinwalker). A fine return

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars Review – In Keys & Chords (Belgian National Blues Magazine & Website)

Gods & highways & Old guitars is het nieuwe baanbrekende album voor de in 1991 opgerichte Englelse band Roadhouse. De oprichteende singer songwriter/guitarist Gary Bonner ving nog steeds backing bij Danny Gwilym (lead 7 Rhythm gitar) Bill Hobley (Bas), Roger Hunt (Drums)en de zangeresssen Mandie.G, Sarah Harvey Smart en Suzie.D. De tien origenele blues en Southern rocksongs vinden een prettige omgangmet overheerliijke Americana tunes. Alle nummers zijn dus sterk beinvloed door bovenvermelde muziekstiljen, en hebben een sterk Americana gebbasserde inhoud. Tech behoud ledere track de nodige bluestructuren.

Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook
Gods & Highways Cover by Martin Cook

Zo worden dus onnodige en clichemalitige bluesakkorden al snel vermeden =. Het shcifjfje opent et met veelbelovende ‘Hell On Wheels’. De toon es meteen gezet naar het aanstekelijke boogie ritme van ‘I Cant Say No’ waar voral het vrouwelijk zangtalent komy bovendrivjen. Al verheellijk Bonner ons ook meteen ook met enkele uitstekende gitaarsolos. Bonner’s stem heeft vaak de neiging om aan frisheld in te boeten. Misschien net daarom zijn de nummers waar de ladys de vocale honneurs waarnemen onze favourite tracks. Tekschriver Gary Bonner geeft zijn scherpinnige visie op de verwoeslingen van de orkaan in New Orleans in het typerrende ‘Katrina’. Al getuigd het meer dan 7 minuten durende ‘Skinwalker’ van enig geinspireerde originaliteit. De schitterende Bo Diddley beat vormt hier de basis voor de gitaarpatronen. In de titletrack raakt het vocale werk van Mandie.G zowaar in een gitaren slipstream. Mandie leidt zo onvermijdeljik de song naar hogere regionen. De texas boogie ‘Blues Motel’ doel muzikaat dan weer sterk aan ZZ Top denken. Al is afslintende climaz ‘Sinner’ sterk beinvloede Southern rock.

Phillip Verhaege (4.5 out of 5)
The Band Roadhouse are masters of diversity. This masterpiece cannot be placed in one musical corner! Besides the beautiful arrangements, the female vocals are real top

Gods & Highways & Old Guitars Review – Music Website
Gods & Highways & Old Guitars

added: 24 Aug 2013 // release date: 19 Aug 2013 // label: Kross Border
reviewer: Andy Snipper
Roadhouse – Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – Printable version
We all know that this is a world of injustice but the fact that Roadhouse are not one of the biggest selling acts around leaves me nonplussed even so. This is a terrific album from one of Britain’s most established bands and it deserves to be top of anyone’s playlist.

Right from the roaring ‘Hell On Wheels’ loaded with attitude from the triple threat of Mandie G, Sarah Harvey-Smart and Suzie D and on to the tear-ass ‘Can’t Say No’ with Gary Boner’s throaty vocals and searing guitar this had me bouncing around the room in delight.

They sit mainly in the Americana camp with strong Blues and rock elements but they are at their best in Fleetwood Mac-esque territory like the eerie ‘Skinwalker’ with its jangly guitars and harmonies from the three ladies alongside big drum sound from Roger Hunt. Danny Gwilym’s guitar solo is dark and has a touch of the Original American smoke to it – just a brilliant band piece all round.

The title track is a classic road song and ‘Katrina’ has deep feeling for New Orleans losses but manages to avoid the cliché of blame by focussing on the terror of the hurricane and its effect on the cities people at the time. That it leads into ‘The Big Easy’ is obviously not an accident.
Closer ‘Sinner’ is another dark piece with a distinctly Americana feel but my personal favourite track is ‘Blues Motel’ – six and a half minutes of chugging perfection with a ZZ top boogie to it.
All told, a brilliant album and full of little joys; expect it to be featuring in a lot of the end of year charts, it really is a cracker.

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4 stars

Blues Matters – National Blues Magazine – Website Review 4 of Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – August 2013
Roadhouse refuse to change lanes in their latest excellent release. Gary Boner’s vision of a solid and uncompromising Blues-Rock band remains uncompromised and wonderfully intact. The rhythms are incessant, the lyrical themes are familiar – dark and all-pervading sheer bloody mindedness abound. From the first backing chant of Hell On Wheels through the Wishbone Ash-like twin guitar solo of I Can’t Say No the pace is unrelenting. What is new and refreshing is the increased prominence given to the female singers Mandie G, Sarah Harvey-Smart and Suzie D, not just as excellent support to Boner’s gruff and menacing voice, but as soloists, for example in the superb title track. Katrina is appropriately sombre and The Big Easy has the groove of Alannah Myles’ Black Velvet but that song’s moody reflection is replaced by sexual tension and superb guitar soloing. The album weighs in at 10 tracks and 55 minutes, and each tune is allowed to expand and breathe. It is Roadhouse’s use of repetition that increases the unsettling and subliminal effect, for example in Slow Down. The standout cut is the call-and-response Spirits Across The Water, a powerful and magnificent song. The riff in Blues Motel puts Black Sabbath to shame. The suitably confessional yet rebellious Sinner closes what is Roadhouse’s most complete and finest offering yet. Oh, yes, the black & white with colour splash artwork is great too.

Blues Matters – National Blues Magazine – Website Review 3 of Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – August 2013
Gods & Highways & Old Guitars

Martin Cook's Excellent Cover art
Martin Cook’s Excellent Cover art

What initially strikes me about the CD is the stunning photography on the cover. Just like an old Camel CD from the nineties, Dust and Dreams, it portrays John Steinback -era America when everything was bust and broken. For any first time listeners the symbolism of the guitar case in the boot of the clapped out car on the cover soon becomes evident. Roadhouse are pure guitar-driven blues rock with a tinge of Southern boogie. Opener Hell on Wheels shows that founder member, chief bottle washer, singer, co-guitarist and main song-writer, Gary Boner is in sparkling form, along with fellow guitarist Danny Gwilym, boosted by the ever dependable rhythm section of Bill Hobley (bass) and Roger Hunt (drums). Then there is the band within the band that is the wonderful Mandie G, Sarah Harvey-Smart, and Suzie D on vocals. Skin Walker clocking in at seven and a half minutes is a native American tale accentuated by Gary’s narrative, accompanied by an electro-acoustic guitar pattern.
Roadhouse at CRF - Photograph by Martyn Turner
Roadhouse at CRF – Photograph by Martyn Turner

The title track has Mandie G handling pitch perfect vocals before the guitars slip into jam-band mode. Katrina takes the listener to the devastation of New Orleans post hurricane. Suzie D does a remake of The Big Easy again with superb guitar work. With a hint of boogie, co-writer Sarah Harvey-Smart does a brilliant job on Slow Down. Country rocker, Spirits Across the Water has beautiful backing vocals. Blues Motel has a riff which could have been plucked from early ZZ Top, showcasing the great vibe Mandie G has with Danny’s guitar work. Like Spirit before it, closer Sinner has an eighties feel to it. This album certainly gets my vote for one of the outstanding British releases of this year. Mr Boner works tremendously hard on his own musical vision and, in my humble opinion, he and his wonderful band have pulled it off
Clive Rawlings

Blues Matters – National Blues Magazine – Website Review 2 of Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – August 2013
Gods & Highways & Old Guitars
Despite being a big festival draw, Roadhouse exist slightly outside the blues mainstream but that’s no bad thing – the band’s dramatic rock-blues approach gives us excellent, spooky tracks like Skinwalker, another Gary Boner original that explores the darker side of American folklore, laced with a flat-out rock guitar solo and the female backing vocals emphasising the unearthly feel; at seven and a half minutes it is the longest piece on the album. Other tracks have Roadhouse’s expected “dark” themes and elements of Americana – take a listen to ‘Katrina’, which is a musically and lyrically very descriptive original on the events in New Orleans in 2005, and this number makes it easy to understand why some reviewers talk of the cinematic side of the band’s music. Some of the other tracks are rather more conventionally blues-based than we have come to expect – who’s complaining when these are of the quality of the pulsing The Big Easy, the up tempo shuffling Slow Down or the raw and rocking Blues Motel (all with female lead singers- there are also more female leads than usual on this set)? This Roadhouse lies at the intersection of Americana and UK blues-rock, and it’s well worth stopping to check it out if you need refreshing
Norman Darmen

Blues Matters – National Blues Magazine – Review 1 of Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – August 2013
Gods & Highways & Old Guitars

Roadhouse at CRF - Photo by Martyn Turner
Roadhouse at CRF – Photo by Martyn Turner

CD Krossborder Records
Sure looks like a blues album. Interesting and creative cover art. It sure is blues-influenced. And this is a new record label for British blues. Checking out the band’s website I’ve managed to confirm the refreshing innovation of Roadhouse in their inclusion of not one, but up to three female vocalists, and I just wish they’d have flagged up a bit more detail on who-sings-what on which track in the 8 page liner booklet. So here’s a name check – Mandie-G, Sarah Harvey-Smart and Suzie.D. This is strident, guitar-dominant blues-rock, where each track inspires an old freak like me to strut with a little geriatric air-guitar posturing (when no-one is looking) as I tread the carpet in front of a cranked-up stereo. The production is exemplary, the songs, especially Hell on Wheels, Blues Motel and the excellent Sinner all chug along like a steam loco with the brakes off with an exhilarating mix of vocal styles. Great for listening to in the car, but play it loud, and as an enticer to see them live, it’s as good a calling card as you could wish for. This proves that whatever they can lay down in the legendary studios across the pond, we can match over here in Thornton Heath.
Roy Bainton

Great British band Release Their Much Anticipated New Album. Roadhouse: Gods & Highways & Old Guitars

August 2013 will see the long awaited new album from Roadhouse released following on from their critically acclaimed DARK ANGEL album released in 2011.

The concept behind GODS & HIGHWAYS & OLD GUITARS was to route the music even more firmly in the Americana genre but still retain the signature Roadhouse blues/rock backbone. Eight out of the ten tracks have Americana based content but the album also uses blues structures more than any previous Roadhouse CD, while avoiding the tired cliché of standard blues structure or chord sequences. There is also a stronger reliance on the female vocalists with four tracks featuring a female lead vocal and others featuring a female driven chorus

Martin Cook's Excellent Cover art
Martin Cook’s Excellent Cover art

The CD starts and finishes with the kind of epic Blues/Rock that the band is famed for, while the remaining eight tracks feature far more radio friendly tracks than on any other previous release, the songs being shorter and more accessible.

Live at the Colourhouse - Photo by Steve
Live at the Colourhouse – Photo by Band Photographer Steve.D

The album opens with Hell On Wheels a heavy riff driven slice of Americana and a typical Roadhouse opener. However the central hook is very strong and certainly stays with you. A song about the girl you can’t tame, more likely she’s going to tame you. The track Skinwalker is pure Native American Folklore; there are vampires, werewolves and also Skinwalkers. They may walk and talk like you, but something evil has taken residence, this really is a song of dark folklore. On the title track Gods & Highways & Old Guitars, Mandie.G takes lead vocals on this tale of a female rock and roller stranded in a desert town, looking for a new band. Slow Down is a blues shuffle with a strong and sexy lead vocal from Sarah Harvey-Smart on a song about the girl who just has to say no to the egotistical loser who is in pursuit. Final track, Sinner is familiar dark epic territory for the band – shades of sin and desperation in the mould of their live favourite Preacher Man, inspired by film noir, black and white classic movies like Night of The Hunter.


For more information and the latest tour dates, please visit:-

Roadhouse are a great hard working British band and they have shared the stage with a veritable who’s who of international artistes including Walter Trout, Joe Bonamassa, The Animals, The Yardbirds, Dr Feelgood, Nine Below Zero, Wilco Johnson, Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones), Pat Travers and many more. A true festival band, they have played at many festivals all over Europe including Glastonbury in 2010 and they play regularly at the Blues/Rock Festival held every year at Butlins in Skegness.

Posted by Jon Kirkman at 19:14

Interview with GARY BONER (ROADHOUSE) – 2 August 2013 on Get Ready To Rock

Posted on August 4, 2013 by petefeenstra

22 years into their career, the hard gigging Roadhouse release ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’, the best album of their career on Krossborder records.

It pays homage to the darker elements of the American south and would fit into any one of those atmospheric Coen Brothers movies. Packed with great songs, twin guitar-led solos and sparkling 4 part harmonies, featuring their unique 3 female vocal line-up, ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ is the result of founder member, singer songwriter and guitarist Gary Boner’s eye for detail.

He writes narrative driven rock which embraces Americana,, Southern rock and boogie, topped by great hooks and played by a band that passionately brings it all to life.

And while previous albums like ‘Broken Land’ and ‘Dark Angel’ achieved international radio plays, the new ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ is a landmark album. It’s a beacon on a musical landscape bereft of original material and new ideas. The noir filled narratives imbue the songs with strong imagery, and the combination of muscular rhythm tracks and incendiary solos are an integral part of an album full of top notch harmonies.

There may be strong echoes of The Doobie Brothers, The Outlaws, Lynyrd Skynyrd and ZZ Top, but the intricate arrangements and original subject matter makes for an album that rocks on its own terms.

Pete Feenstra spoke to Gary Boner about the making of the album, his dark lyrics, the band’s 3 female singers, fellow guitarist Danny Gwilym’s remarkable input and plans for the future.

Congratulation on the album Gary. There can’t be too many songwriters who after 20 odd years and 12 albums have cut their best album. What inspired you?

I think it was the fact that a lot of people thought our last CD ‘Dark Angel’ was our best album had a lot to do with it. I also felt it was the best album I had written and certainly the best one we had recorded – a really good CD – but it did not do as well as we would have liked. We had great global airplay and some amazing reviews, but some critics did not get it. That hurt, so we thought the only way is to fight back with a better CD

I’ve read that you actually write the music first and the lyrics later, which is unusual for a band with such narrative driven material?

It’s true, I need the music the inspire me. I try to come up with a kind of atmospheric soundscape or a riff that really connects with me. It’s then like a tap has been turned on and the themes and words just flow on down. It’s weird, as sometimes I can want to write a song and there is nothing there, the shelves are empty. Other times I just get this feeling that something is there and when I pick up a guitar a CD track emerges. That’s why guitars are to be found all round my house, I can’t afford to waste that moment

You seem to write with a certain feel or ambience in mind?

Yes, I think the material has got to stay true to that original feeling that I have.

Both the ‘Dark Ride’ and ‘Blues Highway‘ albums incorporated noticeable elements of Americana. Was that when you really found your style?

I think so, as it was definitely a jump up in quality. But I think all the earlier CD’s are full of Americana influences, but they were just not executed as well, or were done in a different style.

I formed the band with a guy called Robert.A.Roberts who was an Americana nut and spent about 3-4 months a year out there jamming and song writing. He showed me that path and I soon found myself trudging round Colorado, Wyoming New Orleans etc.

‘Blues Highway’s predecessor ‘Dark Ride’ is still one of my favourite Roadhouse CD’s. I think it’s the fans favourite too

Right from the beginning of the band you have always made use of the male/female vocal dynamic. Do you always write with that in mind?

Yes, we had one girl right from the third gig onwards and had periods of two and often 3 inthe band. As I write I often hear all the parts together. When I first play an idea to our other guitarist Danny it often does not make sense, as he cannot hear the other parts


‘Blues Highway’ seemed to take the band up a notch and your last two albums were even better and increasingly seem to loosely concern themselves with the human struggle and darker themes such as voodoo and death. What draws you to that subject matter?

Well no one wants a happy blues-rock song (laughs). But I’ve had a few major illnesses to deal with over the last 12 years including major brain surgery in April 2012, which left me effectively blind for a short while. Even before that happened, horror and noir were my favourite genres and even though theUSis flawed in many aspects they do that stuff far better than we tend to

Visiting the New Orleans grave of Marie Laveau a Louisiana, Creole practitioner of Voodoo – the renowned and so called ‘Witch Queen of New Orleans’, (September 10, 1794 – June 16, 1881) – was also another turning point. The blood of the animal sacrifices made the previous night was still cascading down the cross. You can have a voodoo doll blessed and ready for action down at Bourbon Street for less than ten dollars!

Do you have to do a lot of research for those songs; I’m thinking of numbers like ‘Dark Angel’, ‘Voodoo Queen’, ‘Blues Highway’, ‘Voodoo Dance’ and ‘Skinwalker’ from the current album?

It’s more like I come across the stories, and if I’m attracted to them, I pick up on a newspaper story or a magazine article or sometimes I’d be driving down a US Highway and they kind of appear at the roadside.

‘Gods And Highways & Old Guitars is almost seems a concept album, with the great American depression as a metaphor for human struggle?

I wanted the album to have the biggest Americana theme yet. The two years its taken to put it together have been against a backdrop of me being sometimes really ill and the band being limited in its opportunities to play as a consequence. I think that is reflected in the music. We are out and about again and looking for good gigs, festivals and new management.

There is a quote that a lot of people have asked you about. It’s when an Amsterdam taxi driver recognised you and thought you must be one of the most miserable people on the planet because of the subject matter because of the subject matter of your songs. I wonder if you ever feel as if you are writing for a particular genre, maybe a little bit like Nick Cave does?

Yes I told the taxi driver it was just a genre and my life didn’t reflect desperation alley. Maybe I didn’t completely convince myself of that.

How did the excellent Marion Post Wollcot photos and Martin Cook’s front cover on the CD booklet come about?

It’s really down to Martin. He has done an amazing job, picking up the baton of creating our covers from the legendary art house genius Vaughan Oliver. Martin pulls together the construction of Blues Matters Magazine. He’d heard the band and it was his first concept. It’s what the music suggested to him. I loved the idea and when I saw it I was knocked out.

Martin Cook's Excellent Cover art
Martin Cook’s Excellent Cover art

The songs all seem to benefit from a fuller and more confident production, was that a particular aim?

Yep, you got it, we threw the kitchen sink at this one. We layered the guitars in the way that most top bands would, which gave them more bite and power. We basically spent a few more days and got deeper in debt (laughs).

Was there a lot of pre-planning for this album, as there seems to be meticulous attention to detail, such as the harmonies, the rhythm tracks and the guitar lines?

Actually there wasn’t. In essence a lot of the band did not know half the songs until about 5 weeks, to one week before recording them, its that freshness you hear on a lot of the songs. However, some of the numbers like the opening ‘Hell On Wheels’ have been in the set for over a year. In terms of production Danny and I had a good few ideas, but we winged a lot of it

Roger Hunt also provided a couple of interesting drum intro’s. How did they come about?

Roger is a great drummer and is always critical of his own playing. He’d probably like to do the whole thing again differently. At the time in rehearsal after having just heard a strum through of the song he just said, ‘We need something to start it, how about this’ and then played that intro, magic!

The album also manages to capture the twin guitar spark between you and Danny Gwilym, was any of this live in the studio? I only ask because although the overall sound is very polished, the solo’s really do sparkle?

We allowed more time for the guitars to be recorded. I think Danny has done an amazing job on this CD. I rate the guy so highly. I think this is one of the best guitar contributions to a band CD I’ve ever heard and I’ll stand by that statement

How did you discover Danny as his guitar work on this album is simply superb?

I used to run the biggest jam session in South West London. It went on for 12 years and in that time I got to meet a lot of great people. We’ve always had this great guitar player legacy, from Kirsty McColl’s guitarist Dr. Noel Brown and the legendary Jules Fothergill (I think he’s the best slide player in the UK) to Canadian speedster Drew Barron. When Drew left suffering from tinnitus, Danny thought he’d be asked as he stood out in that scene. He was the next link in the chain. I thought he would be good, but now I don’t know if I could play without him.

Regarding the songs; I haven’t heard such powerful opening track as ‘Hell On Wheels’ for a long time. The call & response parts really add to the song’s intensity. Was that song written with the opening track in mind?

No, I just came up with that shit kicking riff and the rest just fell into place, a lot of it is Danny’s interpretation and add-ons.

Roadhouse Live 2013
Roadhouse Live 2013

‘Skin-walker’ is probably your most complex arrangement; essentially a two-part song that splits the solo’s. How did you work on that?

The arrangement actually changed about 3 times. The song was like a beast, it had to be tamed somehow. I’m proud of that one, I like choruses where you have to work to listen to it. The elements of blue notes and de-tuning convey atmosphere in my view.

It’s also as lyrically eclectic as it is interesting. Do you have to explain the meaning of a song like that to the band to capture the essential vibe?

I explained it to Danny who did his own web research on the subject. What set me off was an American newspaper report of a Native American who had chopped up his entire family and was then pursued. He got away by jumping off a cliff and he just landed and kept running into the desert. His defence was that he was possessed by a skin-walker. I never tuned into the end of the trial, as I didn’t want to know, it would have spoiled the story

Along with ‘Spirits Across The Water’,the title track is one of your very best ever songs. Did you particularly work on the interrelationship between the guitars and voices?

It came about on an unusual evening where Mandie G. and Sarah Harvey-Smart were there with Danny and I in my studio. Danny crunched out the starting riff and then I just saw something for Mandie that really suited her voice and she told me which lyrics she related to and which she didn’t and we were on our way. Also Sarah’s voice fits so well with Mandie’s. She’s a great singer and has been our secret weapon over the last year.

Did you always have Mandie G. in mind for the vocal?

In that particular writing session we were looking for song ideas for both Mandie and Sarah for the CD and ‘Gods & Highways’ and ‘Slowdown’ emerged.

How do you decide who sings what?

Sometimes having the male narrative vocal is important for the perspective of the song, especially if it’s an evil one like ‘Sinner’, ‘Preacher Man’, or ‘Tellin’ Lies’. But it’s the girls voices that do the real vocal work. On this CD I’ve taken a leaf out of Will.I.Am’s (Black Eyed Peas) book and I have let the girls often carry the chorus. I’ve also encouraged more female lead vocals, with Mandie singing ‘Gods & Highways’ and ‘Blues Motel’, Sarah sings ‘Slowdown’ and Suzie D. sing on the re-recorded track ‘The Big Easy’.

Was the title track actually the starting point for the album in terms of its conceptual theme?

No, funnily enough it started with ‘I Cant Say No’ which we performed at the Skegness Rock & Blues Festival over a year ago and was then followed by ‘Hell On Wheels’

Did you re-record ‘The Big Easy’, because it fitted in with overall feel of album?

Yes, it was a classic slice of Americana and it was in the same context and had the content and feel as the other songs. When we originally recorded it over 8 years ago on our ‘Broken Land’ CD, we just never cracked the production. One critic said it was the best UK Blues/Rock song of the year. Well now we’ve done it properly with a great vocal by Suzie D.

‘Slow Down’ has three writing credits, which is a bit different from the usual?

Yes, it came from the 4 way writing session I was talking about. Sarah liked the music and my concept and kept most of the chorus while I wrote 50% of the verse. She put her personal stamp on the rest and she’s proved she can write too.

Sarah Rocks
Sarah Rocks

‘Spirits Across The Water’ is perhaps your best ever song and it moves from an up tempo country rock to southern rock with an ethereal uplifting vocal. Did it evolve and change while it was being recorded, or did you have the whole idea before you went into the studio?

It was my writing partner Danny who came up with those magical 4 chords, and I then overlayed the vocal melody and story line, plus the bridge. It’s like a dark sea shanty, and the characters are trying to get to the US, but the question is do they ever make it?

The band got it in one take, we played it 3 times in rehearsal and then just recorded it first take. It has never been played live, yet! Bill Hobley our great driving bass player picked it up like a flash and that’s why he’s the bedrock of the band

Is that Sarah singing the first refrain on there?

Sarah’s is the dominant voice on that two girl section as she also is is on the ethereal hook of ‘Katrina’.

‘Blues Hotel’ is a boogie that would grace the ZZ Top catalogue, ‘Sinner’ could be The Outlaws and you previously wrote the anthemic ‘Preacher Man’ with echoes of Skynyrd. Do you have specific influences in mind when you write songs like that?

I love Lynyrd Skynrd and I love Joe Bonamassa and Walter Trout when they get into the kind of emotion filled dark epics that they can produce. It’s been my great pleasure to open for the latter two and I have also exchanged CD’s with them. They probably use mine for coasters. I spent the late 70′s and early 80′s as a kid down the front at The Marquee stalking the guitar players, so I guess all those influences come into the mix.

Have Mandie G, Sarah Harvey Smart and Suzie D. been singing together long?

They only sang together as a trio at this year’s Skegness Festival of Blues & Rock back in January and then they did the CD. Sarah has been singing with Mandie for years, they had their own karaoke business (Seriously!)

Do you write songs with the vocal parts and bv’s already written?

Sometimes I’ve 80% of them written, other times its just 50% and I ask the girls what they want to do with them

When you started the band with Bob Roberts the music leant more towards a country direction, did you purposely embrace a more rocky approach when you started writing on your own?

When Bob left I could only do what I was good at and what I knew. When Danny joined just before the ‘Sea of Souls’ CD, he was a guy who played in famous rock Bands like Shogun and he took us further in that direction. It probably became Rock-Blues instead of Blues-Rock.

Finally Roadhouse have a high profile as a festival band, can we look forward to more such appearances in the future?

Funnily enough we are about to play the excellent Cambridge Rock Festival. However due to my fixation with writing, recording and launching the CD it will be our only major festival appearance of this summer.

Mandie rocks out
Mandie Rocks Out!

We average about 8 a summer with some in Europe but this year I focussed on making the Disc and consequently we haven’t the gigs I’d like. I’m looking forward to picking up a new manager or management to try and help to share the gigging load. Please get in touch via We’ll back at Skegness in January though (Thanks to Alan and all at BM)

All Roadhouse info on

Album review

Interview © August 2013 Pete Feenstra

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CD Review – Gods & Highways & Old Guitars – Guitar & Bass (International High Street Magazine) – August Edition
Gods & Highways & Old Guitars

Martin Cook's Excellent Cover art
Martin Cook’s Excellent Cover art

Shadowy blues-rock with Gary Boner’s vocals played off against a cleaner female chorus. Deep, eerie and hypnotic

Album review: ROADHOUSE – Gods & Highways & Old Guitars On Get Ready to Rock

Posted on July 27, 2013 by petefeenstra

Martin Cook's Excellent Cover art
Martin Cook’s Excellent Cover art

Krossborder [Release date 19.08.13]

Roadhouse have long impressed with their unique take on southern roots rock and Americana, but ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ raises the bar to another level.

As ever, the 10 songs come with Gary Boner’s noirish signature style, while the band has never sounded better, with Danny Gwylim’s stellar guitar work at the heart of everything that is great about this album. The intuitive production facilitates a mellifluous sound, full of deep guitar tones and spine tingling harmonies.

Founder member Gary Boner has often been called the David Lynch of the blues for his Gothic landscapes and dark imagery. And it’s a point obviously not lost on him, as evidenced by the well chosen Marion Post Wolcott photos which adorn the CD booklet. Her photo’s documented post depression America and they provide the perfect backdrop for Boner’s troubled narratives which are predicated by his oft stated belief that:’ misery gives you a voice’.

Martin Cook’s front cover also captures the essence of an album title full of faded dreams and disappointment. But there’s always the survivors creed, represented here by the old guitar in the boot of a beaten up dodge. The motor and cracked highway may represent the broken American dream, but there’s always a guitar to give you hope.

The symbolism seeps into tightly arranged songs, topped by a triumvirate of female vocalists. And it’s their ability to seamlessly switch from sumptuous harmonies to front line vocals that gives the album unexpected light and shade and real diversity.

Roger Hunt’s crisp percussive work and Bill Hobley subtle bass pulses unerringly match the insistent rhythms, while Gary Boner and Danny Gwylim’s twin guitar work constantly bubbles and percolates before finally exploding on the anthemic ‘Sinner’,

The catchy harmonies, chiming guitars and repeated hook of ‘Hell On Wheels’ sweeps you along and levers you into an imagery strewn trip down a tarnished American highway that climaxes with the southern rock influenced ‘Sinner’.

Roadhouse’s cross generational line-up leans on the core band’s 20 year experience and adds the freshness of the younger harmony singers. And if Boner’s lyrics have previously tended towards doom, gloom and the downright gothic, then this album is a tad more reflective, as he lets the imagery and moods do the talking for him.

‘Katrina’ for example is his take on the hurricane devastation in New Orleans. It’s a song that takes you to the kind of place you wouldn’t normally visit: ‘And the levee’s running high, The lightning’s split the sky, It’s coming down again, As the city starts to weep’.

The arrangement cleverly unravels a sharp contrast between the dark imagery and an understated musical optimism, as gently nuanced volume swells, angelic voices and an ascending guitar line suggest that even in the face of desolation, there’s always hope of redemption.

This is a multi layered album full of rich imagery, intricate rhythms, soaring harmonies, delicate guitar textures, and lush melodies that finds its equilibrium somewhere between Americana and kick ass rock blues. ‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ is an album of real substance that deserves to be heard at the highest table.

‘Skinwalker’ is an adventurous, 7.25 minutes of inspired originality. It’s a two-part tale of native Indian folklore that concerns shape shifting and startling transformational abilities. The song is anchored by a Bo Diddley beat, with Gary as the first person narrator, flanked by excellent bv’s and a throbbing electro-acoustic guitar pattern. Both Gary and Danny solo exquisitely either side of Roger’s link-piece that leads the band back into the groove.

‘Gods & Highways & Old Guitars’ is worthy of its title track status. The chiming guitars and harmony vocals are reminiscent of the classic early Doobie Brothers and Mandy G. adds her best ever vocal before the guitars slip into Allman’s Brothers mode on an FM rock classic.

Everything hangs together as a coherent whole and flows like all the very best albums always do, taking in Americana, boogie, southern and country rock. There’s also two thematically linked New Orleans songs that contrast a city in despair (‘Katrina’), with the unison guitar driven, Storyville feel of ‘The Big Easy’. The latter is a re-recording featuring a sensuous performance by Suzie.D.

The narratives draw you in like a gripping novel. The clever call and response vocals on ‘Hell On Wheels’ and ‘Can’t Say No’ bring extra intensity, while the drum led, powerhouse boogie of ‘Slow Down’ features a lead vocal from co-writer Sarah Harvey-Smart. ‘Blues Motel’ is a sister track with Mandy G leading the band into early ZZ Top territory, as Danny swaps imperious rhythm guitar for an incisive solo.

The magnificent up tempo country rocker ‘Spirit Across The Water’ is transformed into an ethereal, angelic piece by peerless girlie bv’s. You’d wager that both ‘Spirit’ and the closing ‘Sinner’ are the kind of songs The Outlaws would love to have written.

‘Gods & Highways & Guitars’ is a masterpiece and a realisation of Gary Boner’s musical vision. His songs may concern the exhaustion of the human spirit, but the music is a polar opposite invitation to pull back the flat top, hit the accelerator and head for the nearest sea spray swept coastal highway. ****½

Review by Pete Feenstra

This entry was posted in ALBUM REVIEWS, ALBUM REVIEWS (Mobile), Start Page (All Posts) and tagged Americana, Bill Hobley, Bo Diddley, Danny Gwylim, Gary Boner, Gods & Highways & Old Guitars, Mandy G, Marion Post Wolcott, Roadhouse, Roger Hunt, Sarah Harvey Smart, ZZ Top. Bookmark the permalink.

Our star rating

***** Out of this world
**** Pretty damn fine
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan of the band or genre
** Instant bargain bin fodder
* Ugly, just ugly


Roadhouse Live at Blues in the City Charity Festival – Essex – Blues Matters Magazine – April – May 2013 – By Mike Lightfoot
The weekend commenced with at the New Crawdaddy Blues Club and what a way to kick off. A double header featuring the explosive talents of Roadhouse and Tim Aves Wolfpack. Roadhouse got the ball rolling and it was a pleasure to see Gary Boner back in action after his recent health scare. the opening number ‘Rainmaker’ set their stall out with superb guitar playing from Danny Gwilym. Other highlights included ‘Dark Angel’ and ‘The Roadhouse Blues’ which featured festival organiser Nick Garner on harp
Roadhouse live at Blues In The City
Roadhouse Live at the British Festival of Blues & Rock, Skegness – March Edition
Written by Dave Ling and including comments added to his blog page It was time to head back to Jak’s for a look at ROADHOUSE [7], a band featuring my ex-Shogun/Tokyo Blade pal Danny Gwilym on guitar. TB’s John Wiggins was also in a rather large crowd that cheered the band along, and why not? Into their tenth consecutive year at Skegness and with three cute female lead singers, Roadhouse offered a party-friendly vibe that was hard to ignore, tearing the joint up with the fruity rock ‘n’ roll of ‘Devil’s Highway’.
Roadhouse Live at the British Festival of Rock & Blues, Skegness



Blues At the Farm Website Review (post gig ) – 7th October 2012

RoadHouse, well, they certainly turned our club into a roadhouse. It was “ELECTRIC”. The atmosphere, the mood, the music, in fact everything was brilliant!!
An absolutely superb afternoon of rocking blues from a bunch of highly talented guys n gals.
Thank You RoadHouse. We will certainly try & get you back for next year. ATB Mac (BATF Crew)
Major Dark Angel Review in Blues Magazine – France – July 2012 – Available in Most Newsagents and Supermarkets Across France:
It’s good to hear albums whose roots you can really feel, and coming from the training of 7 musicians who have as many as 3 magnificent feminine creatures to sing, who lack neither charm nor voice, and even represent some of the best (last few words are as near a translation as we could find) on the scene.Once you’ve listened to this excellent treat, you will quickly realise that we’re in a blues rock vein of the best vintage, of which the longtime guitarist is inspired magnificently by the masters of the genre like Creedence, Clearwater Revival and Lynyrd Skynyrd.

A few excursions into country and latin music like Carlos Santana (So Over You) are just as tasty, and always with this characteristic fibre that distinguishes this group.

The 9th album contains some really nice nuggets like langourous Stormy Monday, a cover of the excellent TBone Walker where the very young voice of Maudie (Mandie?) excels and G Boner plays with an extreme sensitivity to the original. The recording is technically superb, and it’s a treat to hear all of this beautiful group in perfect balance.

Go on, treat yourself, some blues rock of this quality combining such sublime voices – you have to fill your ears with it without any moderation.

Pierre Christ

Les Creatures Manifique!


Dark Angel Review in Rock Society Magazine

What an absolute joy this CD this is. It’s rock, it’s roll, and at times it’s blues and it’s their eleventh CD. Eleventh?

Fronted by singer/ songwriter and excellent guitarist Gary Boner, who is more than ably supported by permanent cast of four including the superb female vocals of Mandie.G,. and aided by a further three women vocalists they have a winning line up. They rock their blues, but have a definite Skynryrd feel to them, more Southern States than the UK where they hail from.

Roadhouse live at Skegness 2012!

Having said that ‘So Over You’ could have been penned by Santana!


This is an excellent CD- varied and enjoyable throughout. ‘Swamp Girl’ is a stand out, Americana track for me, but it’s hard to choose one favourite over the eclectic mix of great self penned tracks on offer here
Great Review of Roadhouse Live At The Cambridge Rock Festival
What I like about festivals is the diversity of the music and bands. What followed next was a full-on twin guitar assault, as close to Southern Boogie as you can get north of the Thames Delta!. I am referring of course, to Gary Boner’s Roadhouse, complete with old mucker Danny Gwilym on the other side of the stage. Add Mandie.G on the vocals, Bill Hobley on bass and Roger Hunt on drums, into the mix you have a stunning set of original material, save the amazing rendition of ‘Roadhouse Blues’.

Gary & Roger in Festival mode
Logistics meant that Mandy carried the weight of vocal duties, but as she told me it gave her a rare chance to take the limelight and she did not let herself or the Band down, especially on her ‘House of the Rising Sun’. Gary introduces each of his own song in an alomost apologetic manner, as they mostly deal with death, disease, voodoo and the devil, thats the blues I suppose!. But you can see the Band enjoy every minute, smiles in abundance. Showcasing material from the recent ‘Dark Angel’ release, their set is mind blowing, amongst other plaudits, but to me above all they entertain – a lesson other Bands should learn. Unfortunately for the two ‘headline’ acts. Three Piece Suite and Mr Pink, they had to follow such a rousing set, akin to after the Lord Mayors show.
Clive Rawlings, Blues Matters, Feb- March 12 Edition.

Review of Dark Angel on by Pete Sargeant


By now established as one of the most distinctive sounding outfits on the English roots scene and known for delivering great live performance sets wherever they play, Roadhouse album releases are renowned for the film noir tinge of Gary Boner’s lyrics, sharp band playing and the interplay of main writer Boner’s gruff vocal delivery with that of his current chanteuses. I say ‘current’ because there are usually changes from record to record – however to say that  a high standard of female singing is maintained would be an understatement.  This time around we get to hear the rasping passion of Mandie G, the ever improving clarity and appeal of Kelly Marie Hobbs plus the knowing sexiness of Suzi D…any of these ladies would be an asset to a musical outfit but moreover they work well together.
Never to be overlooked or underrated, bassist Bill Hobley and drummer Roger Hunt provide a rock solid but nonetheless nimble backdrop to the songs. Apart from the Roadhouse live sets, the rhythm section lend their skills at live shows to guest artists, including yours truly.
Firmly rooted in US Southern rock for dynamic inspiration, the two-guitar arrangements display light and shade, a cloudborne airiness at times and a grinding metallic clout at others. The axes don’t blur out the vocals – Gary is not going to bury his own wordsmithery! The ace in the pack is the difference in the guitar styles of Boner and Danny Gwylim – the former having a classic Mick Ralphs style with biting buzzy soloing but the latter perhaps more of a Wishbone Ash style player, fluid and soaring and by no means a blues purist or rock obsessive. In fact Danny will happily take in anything you lend to him, if  a Brad Paisley touch appears, blame me…..
Inside another classy cover design by band amigo Vaughan Oliver lurk more dark compositions. Fans of US rockers Drive By Truckers would be entranced with this material but bear in mind THIS group has been in existence over twenty years and delivering original numbers all that time.
Too Tired To Play has a purposeful attack and eerie slide to kick off the collection and a fine example of the vocal arrangement skills of this crew. Already alive classic, Rainmaker has a contagious country rock bounce and twanging key riff. Dark Angel is one of what Boner himself would tag a misery-incarnate piece but shows his saturnine leaning to great effect. Dig the arpeggio intro chords overlaid with a singing lead guitar line.  So Over You has – if memory serves – a Kelly Hobbs lyric and a springheeled vibe to offset the hellbound atmosphere of several of the other compositions included here…wonder how Danny gets such a perfect Les Dudek sound on the guitar here ? ‘Play With Fire’ has Mandie G capturing a Stevie Nicks sound over guitar harmonics and pumping Hunt drumwork, a song with great impact and perhaps the one you would play to an acquaintance to illustrate the Roadhouse approach. CloserTelling Lies is a past triumph dusted off the for the present personnel.
For this writer the urgency and insistence of ‘Tornado’ make it the pick of this set but you, dear listener, will find plenty to savour on this album
Pete Sargeant
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Dark Angel Review In Finnish Blues Magazine – Blues News
New releases of note included ‘Dark Angel’ (Cross Border Records) by Roadhouse. This occupies the ground between Americana, Southern Rock and the Blues, and is an unusually dark and spooky album that shows just why the Band has a strong following among UK Blues-Rock lovers. (
Dark Angel Review In FATEA Magazine – By Nick Churchill
Were there a shortage of sincere, hard-working, rockin’ blues outfits Roadhouse would easily stand head and shoulders above the pack. But if there’s one thing the western world has in abundance it is sincere, hard-working, rockin’ blues outfits – as a random sample of live music bars on a Friday or Saturday night in Anytown USA, UK or Europe will sweatily attest.

Danny and Gary at Abbeyfest
Which means Roadhouse have to add something extra to their blend of supreme musicianship, memorable vocals and sympathetic production to stand out as well as they do. And that something extra comes in the form of dark and twisted blues lyrics, dramatic delivery and enough confidence to climb into the back seat of the blues and still command attention. The opening cut, Too Tired To Pray shakes its tail feather over six action-packed minutes and still only serves as an hors d’ouevre for the main attraction – the Bible black Southern Gothic bluescapes of the title track and its rollicking companion piece, Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues.
Singer Gary Boner conjures the kind of Dantean reverie that both seduces and repels, his incessant rhythm guitar only adding to the gumbo, before giving way to blessed relief courtesy of co-singers Mandie G, Kelly Marie Hobbs and Suzi B who ease the songs into their lead vocal passages with meticulous care. This is Roadhouse at their best and the mix continues to work well on the more conventional Swamp Girl, but starts to wear thin in the stringy lead guitar passages of Rainmaker and Play With Fire, bottoming out on the reedy version of T-Bone Walker’s Stormy Monday.
But if dark-hearted, richly coloured blues is your thing, you’ll have to go some to find a more charismatic vessel than Roadhouse.
Nick Churchill
Dark Angel Review In Classic Rock – October 2011
Roadhouses’s sleeve notes look a little odd, with a line up built on 4 grizzled gigsters and spiced up with a trio of glamourpus female singers in black strappy dresses. It’s a decent blend in practice though and adds a nice blend of sweet and sour on the superior stuff like ‘Swamp Girl’.

‘Mandie.G – How Dark is your angel?’
They are probably great live, but without the visuals a few of the fairly traditional tracks seem bafflingly long
Henry Yates – Classic Rock – October 2011 –  5 stars out of ten
(Gary’s note) – Well it had to come, a mediocre review of Dark Angel …..Well that makes the score 7-1 in favour, but you can’t please everybody…..Interesting fact, Dark Angel is one of the top illegaly downloaded albums in Russia and Eastern Europe.
Pete Feenstras Review of the New Centre Stage DVD For ‘Get Ready To Rock’ – in advance of the launch gig on Sunday 23rd October at The Boom Boom Club, Sutton F.C
There can be no better occasion than a 20th anniversary and a packed festival stage to film a band in its pomp.  And this DVD does the trick. Filmed simply as a one camera shoot of Roadhouse’s record breaking 8th appearance at the 2010 Skegness Rock & Blues Festival, ‘Centre Stage’ is a live document of one of the UK’s hardest working rock/blues band. The camera angle looks down over the front ranks of the packed crowd to catch the essential connection between the band and an enthusiastic crowd as Roadhouse work their way through the meat and potatoes of their current ‘Dark Angel’ album.
There’s a nice balance between the sparkling solos of the mighty Danny Gwillum stage left – who mixes his scintillating attack with dirt sounding slide – and Gary Boner, stage right, whose fiery licks kick start an impressive succession of self penned songs. And centre stage (no pun intended) is the three girlie triumvirate of Mandy Graham, Kelly Jo Hobbs and Suzie D, who during the course of a high octane performance, dance their way through a frisky routine while shifting between fine harmony singing and backing vocals to singing one lead vocal each.

Roadhouse ‘Rock out’
And while the video provides plenty of slinky glamour and showcases a dependable festival band at their best, it is Gary Boner’s songs that hold sway. Most of the material comes from the current ‘Dark Angel’ album, of which ‘Too Tired To Pray’ features the sharply contrasting Boner vocal growl and the female bv’s, neatly offset by some  beautifully nuanced slide from Danny
The following ‘Rainmaker’ is one of their very best efforts with Gary’s whispered vocals over a very strong melody and gospel style backing with a country hue. The slow burning title track ‘Dark Angel’ features an expansive solo from Gary but is ironically slightly hampered by some indifferent camera work.
Suzie D gets her chance to shine on the sleazy ‘Lying Game’, while Kelly shimmies up the mic to make the most of another Boner classic ‘The Big Easy’, complete with twin guitar lines. And just when you’re marvelling at the substance of several superbly arranged songs and great playing, up steps Mandy G to steal the limelight with a raucous version of ‘House of the Rising Sun’. It may not be the most original cover but she brings real raunch and an undoubted visceral edge to the song to grab the audience by their collective lapels and generate real excitement in the packed hall.
It’s left Gary Boner to kick into start a big two song finale with more fiery licks on the dynamic call and response lines of ‘Tellin’ Lies’ and the Skynyrd  meets Classic rock steal that is ‘Preacher Man’
‘Centre stage’ is a fine limited run dvd for the fans but if it should fall into the hands of unsuspecting rock fans they won’t fail to be impressed by a fiercely independent band whose quality material, rock solid rhythm section, consummate playing  and rock blues crossover style will surely win over many more festival audiences in the future.
**** (4/5)
© Pete Feenstra
Electric Ghost Webzine Review of Dark Angel
Voodoo Blues = Roadhouse
11th Album from the highly regarded South London blues band.
The Band comprises of the wonderfully named Gary Boner on guitar and vocals, Bill Hobley on bass, Roger Hunt on Drums, Danny Gwilym on guitar and Mandie.G on vocals, they are aided by a quartet of sizzling female vocalists Suzie.D, Rachel Clark, Kelly Marie Hobbs and Samantha Richards. Their influences include Lynrd Skynrd and Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Roadhouse at the Cambridge Rock Festival
They are very much a blues rock band but with a cluster of vocalists they have a very soulful sound. It is also quite a dark album. The title track ‘Dark Angel’ paints a dark picureof vunerability to outside forces Of the song ‘Too Tired To Pray’, Boner says “It’s about loss of hope, death of dreams, inertia, exhaustion of the soul, meltdown”. He has a facination with voodoo and gothic moods thats comes from visits to the the large graveyards in New Orleans, the so called ‘Cities of the Dead’. The cover art is by the legendary designer Vaughan Oliver, compliments the music perfectly. A passionate slice of dark delights for troubled souls.
Lee Edwards
Roadhouse Achieve Amazing Results in the Blues Matters 2011 Writers Poll – Blues Matters Magazine Oct/Nov
In the 2011 Blues Matters Writers Poll, Roadhouse achieved the following remarkable results:
– Best UK Studio Album – 4th Place – Dark Angel
–  Top UK Band – Finshed in the Top 10 (placings not announced after 5th place)
–  Lifetime Achievement Vote – Gary Boner, shared 5th place along with Robert Plant & Georgie Fame
Major High Street Review In R2 Magazine
Though Roadhouse is primarily categorised as a blues band, a listen to this album allows for some dispute – not seriously so, but songs like the driving ‘Rainmaker’ with its country-flavoured introduction, female leads and harmonies over a rock backing akin to The Eagles, or the very dark title track – nice to know that Roadhouse are as unlikely as ever to go happy-clappy on us – demonstrate that throaty frontman Gary Boner and company are no way typical twelve bar boogie merchants.

Danny and Gary at Abbeyfest
Mind you they give us T-Bone Walkers ‘Stormy Monday’ (even if its not quite a straight cover), and there is plenty of blistering guitar work thoughout the entire CD. A latin influence crops up on ‘So Over You’ , and ‘Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues’ presents Gary’s feelings on religion, another of the Bands recurring themes.
Norman Darwen
Three stars
Ravenheart Music Webzine Review – 9th September – Review of Dark Angel
Roadhouse is one of the UK’s most established big stage Blues/Rock acts, offering a collaboration between experienced musicians and much younger talented female vocalists. ‘Dark Angel’ is the latest in a long list of albums that have been released since the band’s formation in 1991. The band is centred around permanent members Gary Boner (guitar and vox), Bill Hobley (Bass), Roger Hunt (Drums), Danny Gwilym (guitar) and Mandie G on vocals. Add to this the female vocals of Suzie D, Rachel Clark, Kelly Marie Hobbs and Samantha Richards, to secure one awesome line up. The music on this release has a Rock/Blues/Gospel feel with influences from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Creedence Clearwater Revival. I also detect a country feel too, more so on the 7 minute plus ‘Rainmaker’. The male vocals remind me a little of a laid back Alice Cooper (believe it or not), so if you could imagine Alice Cooper making a Rock/Bluesey sounding album, this could be it.
The New Alice Cooper?
There is no song shorter than 4 mins and six songs exceed 6 mins, but you find yourself never getting bored with what you hear. The title track is an awesome 8+ minute ballad, with some dark lyrics…”The Devil Took My Brother, Drunken driver took my Son”….”My Dark Angel, she’s looking down, She’s looking down on me”. This is one of my faves from this album together with the bluesey ‘Stormy Monday’ and the Stevie Nicks sounding ‘Play With Fire’. Overall, this release is very good, so for further info about the band go to and check them out. A pleasant release…8.75/10 (Dave)
Dark Angel
Self Produced
Genre – Rock / Blues
Star rating 8/10
This is the South London rockers’ eleventh album and it’s a good one. This release followed their successful appearance on the Bourbon Street Jazz and Blues stage at Glastonbury. Here they take the gloves off and give us a real rock feast, full of main songwriter Gary Boners’ dark parables of devils, angels, bad spirits and voodoo, death, disease and destruction- to lighten the mood there are some excellent side dishes of country and Latin as well. They’ve made several albums and good ones at that, but this is ‘the’ one; their best. Bandleader Boner certainly understands programming; the pacing is very good throughout. The album kicks in, lifts off, and moves straight into top gear; with the ZZ Top flavoured opener ‘Too Tired to Pray’ and it’s a cracker –Boner’s deep baritone growl sets the dark mood for the whole show ‘Let me tell the difference between pleasure and pain, some people would tell you that they’re both the same’ he growls – it’s a very dark account of spiritual exhaustion. It works; this track has got it all, and its FM friendly, but not ‘too’ friendly, some on the team would have preferred a less 80’s drum sound, but it is what it is.  The Roadhouse girls, Mandie G, Kelly Marie Hobbs and Suzi D are in very good form; it suggests that they worked very hard at those vocals, and its paid dividends. On guitar Danny Boy Gwylm has to be one of the most tasteful players around, he lays great slide and regular guitar on this opener and manages to be both tasteful and kicking the same time – ‘Too Tired to Pray’, look out for that one! It rocks and it rolls as well.
A neat piece of programming and the album moves into Country – ‘Rainmaker’ – ‘Rainmaker’s coming’ goes the chorus, it’s catchy, it’s a song for driving, and, being replete with Danny’s excellent country licks – is very good – Roots and Country radio stations should get this one programmed in. Track three is the album’s noire epic, the Title track ‘Dark Angel’– Boner paints a sound picture; a dark lonely road at late twilight, death and destruction all around, (so it’s definitely South London), there’s fear, anxiety and distrust with only a dark angel to look to for hope. ‘Now on this dusty highway, with the legion of the damned, my friends they all just spit on me…’ sings Boner; its dark indeed…with lashings of electric guitar and the very nice touch of some acoustic nicely placed neatly in the mix. It’s a very good track. The excellent cover by the renowned Album cover artist Vaughan Oliver was possibly inspired by this track. The cover picture is enigmatic, as if we’re in motion and travelling a tree lined highway at night, a menacing figure appears through the trees, it’s fascinating – think ‘Blair Witch’ in colour and you’ll get a clue.
The title track is followed by a song with the classic Bo Diddley beat; the voodoo tinged ‘Swamp Girl’, great live track this; then it’s back to the country for ‘Tornado’a catchy country-rock song with another dark lyric. Moving to the close we find the most commercial track on the set its ‘So Over You’, a Santana-ish /Latin flavoured tune that Kelly Marie Hobbs had a hand in writing. The penultimate track has the great title ‘Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues’; you really can’t miss with a title like that – it’s good and has a catchy chorus that recalls Pink Floyd tune.  The album closes with a re-recording of a Roadhouse live favourite ‘Tellin’ Lies’ it’s a butt-kicking end to a very good set with Danny Gwilym’s guitar an outstanding feature throughout.
Review Team
Dark Angel Review – Propaganda Magazine (in house music industry distribution magazine)Roadhouse began twenty years ago as a big bad bar-room blues band but it’s now eased into a swampy voodoo vein with Gary Boner, the brains behind the outfit, writing or co-writing most of the songs.
On this CD his soulfully precise lead guitar and raspy, leathery whispered vocals are to the fore: alongside three girl singers who feature strongly on songs like the chugging Tellin Lies and So Over You, which has more than a hint of Stevie Nicks about it.
There are just two blues based numbers here; T-Bone Walkers ‘Stormy Monday’ and Boner’s own Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues. The rest are straight ahead rock numbers like ‘Too Tired To Pray’ , epic gothic ballads like ‘Dark Angel’ and the nervy southern funk tune ‘Swamp Girl’ which contains some swirling psychadelic guitar runs that heighten the songs dark feel. This CD should be the one that propels Roadhouse into the big time.
Roadhouse Live At The Skegness Festival 2011
Saturday afternoon started with the legendary Roadhouse performing live tracks taken from their new CD album “Dark Angel”, which was well received. Roadhouse have been performing at Butlins Rock n Blues weekend for the last 8 years and have attracted a loyal following, as well as performing at Glastonbury for the first time last year 2010.
This was followed by the annual jam session once again organised by Gary Boner of Roadhouse, which displayed a wealth of talent from professional and enthusiastic musicians alike. Making sure that Rock n Blues is far from being laid to rest with an abundance of new and young talent. A very popular and well attended event and an essential part of the whole weekend for many.
Andy Nisbet
Blues Matters
April/May 2011
Roadhouse Review from Maverick Magazine
Roadhouse CB2
Root-rockers roar back with a classic
Roadhouse’s music has always been different, country-rock, heading into roots and blues, with a dark, cinematic world view, the still back routes of America laced with the dirtier back streets of London. This is the band’s 11th album and is the pinnacle of their achievements, rumbling, roaring and screaming in pain while never losing track of the country undertones.
Under the leadership of guitarist/singer/songwriter Gary Boner, the band have been constantly pushing back the boundaries, and from the opening ringing tones of Too Tired To Pray you’re in the Roadhouse world. There are few such bands who can get away with expansive pieces, but such is Roadhouse’s mastery that the eight minutes of the majestic title track seem normal.
The album’s success is in part due to Boner’s growing maturity as a writer, part of it is the band’s latest in a long line of lead guitarists, Danny Gwilym, whose playing takes things to a new level. There’s an inventive, rich, bluesy rock ‘n’ roll warmth, but there’s also the air of an early Clapton; imagine Cream playing in a roadhouse. Boner’s chugging, jangling rhythm is incessant and the solid rhythm section of Roger Hunt (drums) and Bill Hobley (bass) is still there from the very beginning is still there. The band’s unusual vocal approach is still there, too, a trio of female singers (Mandie G, Kellie Marie Hobbs, Suzi D) who at one moment appear to be adding backing to Boner, then switch to a lead harmony, then solo lead. The constant changes create an ensemble feel, rather like the Band where the boundaries of lead vocals were forever blurred.
Of the tracks, Boner’s Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues is a favourite (with Gwilym’s gut-wrenching lead guitar), but there are lighter numbers such as So Over You, co-written with Gwilym and Hobbs. A classic. ND

Roadhouse live at Glastonbury 2010

Roland Jarmann Blues Matters “Review printed, but only recently discovered by the Band”

“The effervescent Gary Boner led Roadhouse on to the brand new Jazz & Blues stage for what proved a triumphant Glastonbury debut. They went on stage at 11.30pm, just as Stevie Wonder was finishing on the Pyramid stage and the crowd began streaming in to watch Gary & Co. The organizers had succeeded in creating a quite magical feel in the venue, think Louisiana and you’ll catch some of the flavour. It certainly inspired the band to great heights. They kicked in with old fave ‘Blues Highway’ and things rapidly heated up, they segued into ‘Too Tired to Pray’ from the new album and the crowds were streaming in; into ‘Swamp Girl’ and the band was storming, band and audience rocking as one. By the third tune Gary and co had conquered. They were completely in charge and they raised the game again as the Roadhouse sultry sex-machine clicked into gear; Susie D with ‘Lying Game’, Mandy G with ‘House of the Rising Sun’ raised the roof; finally Kelly Marie Hobbs brought it all home with ‘The Big Easy’. As that finished the crowd were chanting ‘Kelly-Kelly’ and the chanting continued until the end of the set; this was the day of England’s World Cup disaster against Germany and it felt as if Gary & Co had finally really given the people something to cheer; this is a real British band of the people and, unlike England, every one of Gary’s team was on top form when it really counted! The band rocked on with a long-long version of ‘Roadhouse Blues’ and closed with Telling Lies’, the crowd roared for an encore and they got a high octane rendering of ‘Preacher Man’. The show closed to a huge roar from the 600 inside and 1000 plus outside and both band and crowd were ecstatic. Congratulations to promoter Andy Fielding for putting together a great venue and for bring the real thing to Glastonbury and congratulations to Gary and co for rising to the occasion with true aplomb.” 16/01/2011

1st Dark Angel CDReview Julian JarrettBlues Matters Dec10/Jan11″This is a fine album indeed. Roadhouse takes the gloves off and give us a real rock fest with some excellent side dishes of country and Latin as well.
They’ve made several albums and good ones too, but this is ‘the’ one, the best. Gary Boner certainly understands programming. The album kicks in lifts off and moves into top gear – the opener ‘Too Tired to Pray’ is a cracker- its got it all . Its FM friendly, but not too friendly and has shades of ZZ Top, the girls are in their best form ever, they must have worked hard at those vocals, and Danny boy Gwilym on guitar has to be one of the most tasteful players around, he lays great slide and regular guitar on this opener manages to be tasteful and kicking at the same time -‘Too Tired to Pray’, remember that one!. It rocks and boy does it roll as well.
A neat peice of programming and we are into Country – ‘Rainmaker’ – ‘Rainmakers Comin’ goes the chorus,its catchy, its a song for driving, and, being replete with Danny’s excellent country licks – is very good – Roots and country radio stations; get this one programmed in.So to the albums noire epic, the Title track – Gary paints a sound picture ; a dark lonely road at late twylight, death and destruction all around, (so it’s definately South London), there’s fear, anxiety and distrust with only a Dark Angel to look to for hope. There are lashings of electric guitar and some acoustic nicely placed in the mix, it’s good, very good indeed.. Fourth is the Bo Diddly inspired, voodoo tinged Swamp Girl leading to track 5 ‘Tornado’ a country based rock song. Moving to the close of the album ‘So Over You’ a Santana-ish/Latin flavoured tune is the most commercial track on this set. The penultimate track is ‘Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues’; and you can’t miss with a title like that- its good and has a catchy chorus slightly redolent of a Pink Floyd tune. A re-recording of a Roadhouse classic ‘Tellin Lies’ closes a work of real quality with Danny’s guitar a real standout –”


Roadhouse At Millers – Kirkby in Ashfield – 8/7/10 Carol Borrington Blues Matters Oct/Nov 10

“After a distinguished line up over the spring and summer, Millers had to find something special to finish and what better than one of Skegness Rock’N’Blues Festivals favourite bands, Roadhouse!. They graced Millers stage straight after their first appearance at Glastonbury’s new Bourbon Street Jazz and Blues Stage. Double firsts in fact, the first time for a Blues stage at this prestigous festival, as well as for the Band themselves.

Their performance was carried out wth all the professional panache, musical skill and humour that is expected from this Band. They kicked off with ‘No Place To Hide’ from their 2004 CD of the same name, providing a taster of the evening’s music to come.
They followed with a slower blues number, ‘Blues Highway’. Gary’s gritty vocal underscored by Mandie’s mellow tones and then full vocal harmonies from Mandie, Rachel and Gary, revealing what a wealth of not only instrumentals Roadhouse have at their fingertips, but vocal diversity as well. This was all immaculately interpreted by Danny’s emotive guitar riffs and topped off by percussive bass and fine drum fills.

By that time they had the Miller’s crowd eating out of their hands, although like many of the acts that come to Millers, I think they found the quietness of the audience at first, a little distracting. First rule of Millers, if they like you you’ll hear a pin drop untill the end and then you’ll hear them!

Roadhouse are due to release their next CD called “”Dark Angel”” in mid November, Millers was given a taste of it’s contents thoughout the gig. The title track ‘Dark Angel’ is a classy number, instrumenally, vocally and lyrically beautifully structured, with a good hook line. A blues rock ballad with a hue of country, somewhat in the New Jersey vein of blues. It’s a song full of soul and passion, with lovely rises and falls in tempo. If the quality of the rest of the CD is only a fraction of the quality of this song, the Band have an excellent CD in store for us. The final decision on Roadhouse, half of Kirkby must have heard the shouts, “”Three more””.

Carol Borrington

” 28/11/2010

Roadhouse at The Buzz Club – Barnet

Vicky Martin Blues Matters Issue 55 – June-July 2010″From playing to over 1000 at Skegness to a small crowd at the Buzz Club Gary Boner and Roadhouse demonstrated truly professional presentation. The band has been on the road for some 20 years and yet from the degree of warmth and enthusiasm that they generated they could just be starting out. But the low turnout requires explanation; internally the venue is very good, quality PA and lighting, and comfortable. Yet externally no one would know that there is anything happening. There were no indications whatsoever from the street that anything was taking place; in fact you cant see anything from the street so there is no hope of attracting passing trade. It is off the beaten track, and very dark outside. That’s tough when your band is from deepest South London and the venue is on North London Herts border. Local advertising must surely help? Lots of local people think that good live music no longer exists in this part of the world and they need to know, but how can they with no posters and no general advertising? That said Gary and the boys and girls gave us a great show. There were several Roadhouse favourites including a scorching Roadhouse Blues (maybe they should think about writing new lyrics and making this your own, it wasn’t an original riff in the first place  Im sure they could pull out a winner!), there was a great fun version of Rock Me Baby with loads of classic licks and blues guitar face-pulling. There was also Mandy G’s usual winning version of House of the Rising Sun but it is always the original tunes that interest me most. Apart from favourites like Blues Highway tonight featured two songs from the forthcoming album  the title track DARK ANGEL and TOO TIRED TO PRAY both of them excellent.

They leave me with an interesting conundrum about the band. Gary’s lyrics are quite dark, dealing with such topics as, death, illness, lonely roads, voodoo and the devil. Yet the band delivers with a big smile loads of bounce and obviously enjoys every minute.

Other standouts included Preacher Man, which is always a cracking tune. For me, the very best tune of a top notch evening was Brooklyn Blues a super slowish groove this and it featured a welcome appearance by former Roadhouse favourite Anne Campbell.

Gary Boner’s Roadhouse is an object lesson to bands and bandleaders everywhere- whether the audience is 1500 or 25 they deliver, they entertain, and they do it with real style. Onwards and upwards, long may they roll.

” 15/08/2010
Sea of Souls Review Bill Smith Blues In Britain March/April 2010 “Album Review  Roadhouse  Sea of Souls
Blues Matters Records

Roadhouse are a Rock Blues band  very much at the Rock end of the Blues Spectrum, but with three female vocalist and one male vocalist there is a softer edge to their rock, and much of their music has a blues underpinning. Gary Boner and Danny Gwilym add strong guitar solos to the ensemble whilst Bill Hobley and Roger Hunt anchor everything with bass and drums respectively. The three female vocalists are Mandie G, Suzie D and Kelly Marie Hobbs.

All of the songs are originals with the exception of House of the Rising Sun. The album starts with the title track Sea of Souls which, with its choral elements has the feel of a mini rock opera and is a good opening number. Lights on the water starts gently but builds up gradually through the song. The Answer has a similar structure but is more energetic at the end. Voodoo Dance is an up tempo rocker about the devil and all his works where the backing vocals counterbalance an insistent rhythm leading to a strong and vibrant guitar solo and then back to the choral ensemble. House of the Rising Sun is excellently sung by Kelly with an atmospheric and slightly more dramatic version of the Animals original. The Lying Game starts with a bluesy guitar intro and Suzie’s strong vocals, that at times remind me of Maggie Bell, and there’s nothing wrong in that! For me this is one of the stand out tracks of the album. Dark River has a vocal opening gospel like in feel and is a homily about crossing the River Styx. It has a strong vocal component  counterbalanced with strong guitar work. Tumbling Down again features Kelly on vocals  a rip roaring song, with an equally strong slide guitar solo, featuring strident vocals and strong backing vocals. The Dark of the Sun is another rock tone poem with good vocal and guitar work. The final track is Preacher Man a story about a man who has lost his faith featuring all four vocalists on the chorus. Once it gets to the guitar solo the song gains momentum and maintains that to a strong climax.

This is a fitting finale to a highly charged album. Sea of Souls is a fine testimony to the current line up of Roadhouse. The ensemble sound is rich and full bodied, the songwriting is inventive with all the vocalists meshing well together and balancing well with the two guitarists. All in all this is a strong performance from a band at the rock end of the rock blues spectrum.
Bill Smith” 11/05/2010

Roadhouse At Skegness 2010 Darrren Wisdom -Blues Rock Writer – Various Review Sites “Im absolutely thrilled at Roadhouse’s fantastic reception at the Skegness Festival. As you know, it was my first time at Skegness and I want to say that I felt it was amongst the very best performances that I’ve witnessed from the band over the last five years. Having sat through three days of Rock & Blues of varying quality and at times mind numbing boredom, it was a real pleasure to watch a band that was not afraid to grab the audience by the balls and rock out. Telling Lies, was absolutely ferocious and the band were going full pelt, right out of the straps. Mandie, Suzie and Kelly were particularly fine throughout with the trademark, Roadhouse Stomp, dance moves well to the fore. Certainly both my wife and friend were kept entertained throughout the set. Such a shame that the band couldn’t have performed for longer. Verdict: best band on the Centre (Blues) Stage by a country mile! Pretty much blew the majority of other bands on the bill that weekend into the weeds. This is what I crave from a live music experience, a good loud, tight Rock/Blues band and excitement with great songs and harmonies. Roadhouse were one of the few (only?) bands I saw that weekend to really work that large centre stage and involve the audience. I actually met some Tropic/Ruislip regulars after your set and they were blown away when I told them that RH would be playing at our local venue. HowUncle Stan, was able to follow that performance is beyond me (I left for the Reds bar for Martin Turner’s Wishbone Ash  one of my other favourite bands so didn’t see Stan Webb). I missed the harmony guitars on, The Answer!

Darren Wisdom” 06/02/2010
Roadhouse at Colne 2009 (National R&B Festival) Darren Wisdom Blues Matters Website “Redemption. Seldom have I witnessed such a dramatic turnaround during a major music
festival programme that that which was achieved by Rock/Blues legends Roadhouse on the British Stage at The Great British Rock & Blues Festival at Colne.

Taking the stage at the capacity crowd slot of 9:00pm, the veteran Gary Boner led band (now in their 20th Anniversary year), proceeded over the next 93 minutes to demonstrate exactly why they have headlined at this prestigious, major British Blues festival for seven years consecutively.

Setting out the band’s stall in no uncertain terms, Gary moved to the centre front of the stage and then started up the opening guitar riff of Telling Lies, the band adroitly picked up the gauntlet on this upbeat Blues/rocker.

The second song up was the no-nonsense, straight ahead rocker, Sea Of Souls (from the album of the same name). This was a classic Gary Boner penned tale of angst and desperation with guitarist Danny Gwilym’s speedy solo crackling with life, harmonics fairly leaping off his guitar’s fretboard. Taking a change of pace for their third song, Blues Highway, exhibited a low down, bottom heavy guitar groove that the stalwart rhythm section of Bill Hobley (Bass) and Roger Hunt (Drums) made the very most of.

The Band then characteristically took their chance by choosing to premier a new song, Swamp Girl, a well-named slice of southern rock with a hell of a hypnotic riff. Gary then took the opportunity to introduce the first of Roadhouse’s vocal triumvirate, Kelly Marie Hobbs for the Bluesy shuffle, The Lying Game a classic tale of infidelity and deceit. Next vocalist up was Roadhouse legend and powerhouse vocalist, Mandie G. to deliver her reading of that classic Animals standard, The House Of The Rising Sun. Mandie drew in the attentive audience with her sensuous, heartfelt vocal inflections and dramatic staging. Mandie truly wrought every ounce of passion and heartbreak from this classic account of experience and bitter regret with dramatic, soaring guitar solos from both Danny and Gary in support. The third and final part of the Roadhouse vocal trinity was personified by the gorgeous, smoky and immaculate Blues tones of vocalist Suzie D. for the Stateside FM radio play favourite, The Big Easy. Like her band mate Kelly Marie, Suzie is still in her early 20’s with great potential and both are surely talents to watch for the future.

With the vocal showcases completed, the band wasted no time in summoning up the infectious African drum based rhythms of Voodoo Dance, a fast paced rocker that featured much dancing from Kelly, Mandie and Suzie coupled with Gary taking it upon himself at one point to jump onto the drum riser (no doubt promoting the healing of his cracked ribs in the process&)! After the audience response to their last frenetic song had subsided, Gary then stepped up to introduce the second (and final) cover of the band’s set for the evening, the old Doors song and aptly titled, Roadhouse Blues. The band locked straight into this mid-paced boogie as if the song had been custom written for them. Mid way through the song, Gary seized the opportunity to play an extended guitar solo over the cooking band, giving his Stratocaster’s fretboard and tremolo arm and thorough workout!

The scene was thus set for a key Roadhouse song, from their last album, Sea Of Souls The Answer. An achingly beautiful and haunting Gary Boner written epic that built from a simple guitar arpeggio figure to a grandiose rock statement. This song is surely amongst the very finest that Gary has put his name to and Roadhouse’s full blooded interpretation on the big festival stage, with superb PA and lighting was a worthy spectacle. The final song of the band’s set was their US FM radio hit, Voodoo Queen (from the Broken Land album). The Roadhouse vocal section of Kelly Marie Hobbs, Suzie D. and Mandie G. took turns in a vocal gymnastics competition worthy of the London 2012 Olympics, and to demonstrable audience appreciation. Long and loud applause from the capacity audience brought the band out to play an encore, the choice of which could only be one song, Preacher Man. A classic slice of Americana that was as cinematic in scope as it was epic in scale with its recurrent themes of lost faith, longing and redemption (which is where we came in). All in all a stunning festival set and a triumphal return to Colne for Roadhouse, and if anyone came looking for the best in the Rock/Blues arena then they surely found it during those precious 93 minutes of pure spun gold that night.

Darren Wisdom
” 16/09/2009
Roadhouse Rock On Unknown The Sutton Guardian 2nd July 2009 “Roadhouse set to rock on
2:44pm Tuesday 30th June 2009

Local roots rockers Roadhouse celebrate their 20th anniversary show at the Boom Boom Club/Sutton Utd FC on Sunday 5th July with special guests, their former guitarist Jules Fothergills Northsyde.

Promoting their best ever album Sea of Souls which has remarkably become their fourth album to gain major FM radio air play in the US  Roadhouse celebrate their 20th year on the road.

Still led by the immensely talented song writer, guitarist and vocalist Gary Boner, Roadhouse are a riff driven anthemic rock band whose 9 album career spans southern rock and rock-blues.

The band who feature the unique 3 female front line vocals of Mandy Graham, Suzie Dingle and Kelly Joe Hobbs, also boast the formidable twin guitar line-up of Gary Boner and Danny Gwillym and have frequently been compared to artists such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, Neil Young and Walter Trout.

Gary Boner’s songs such as Preacher Man and Voodoo Queen are up there with the best American anthemic rock songs ever written and the fact that the band are internationally air played from Croatia to California is testament to Boner’s song writing skills.

The days of guitar driven songs about dark desert highways never really disappeared. They just became part of the brilliant Gary Boner song writing tapestry, to be found on several Roadhouse albums such as Sea of Souls, No Place To Hide and Blues Highway, all of which just like the band live, are hugely recommended. Special guests are Jules and Lorna Fothergills Northsyde. Previously Roadhouses lead guitarist Jules went on to form Funkydory and now launches his brand new band.

DETAILS: Roadhouse + Northsyde play the Boom Boom Club on Sun 5th July.

Tickets are œ8adv/œ10 on door. Doors open 7pm Bookings/info Pete Feenstra 0208761 9078

” 05/07/2009
Major UK Rock Magazine Review Colin Palmer “Rock N Reel (W.H.Smiths, Borders etc)” Nov/December 2008 “Roadhouse are clearly keen to make up for lost time. The London-based blues rockers now front three female vocalists and surprisingly, it works, with the singers taking it in turns on House Of The Rising Sun, The Lying Game and Tumbling Down to pitch for the kind of damaged souls who inhabit the small hours.

Everything within this band serves their songs, so when the guitar burns, or the cymbals crash, it means something — it stokes the fire, builds the tension. Even more than before, Gary Boners lyrics capture the feel of the emotionally and materially desperate, adrift in their own land, revealing the plight of a man at times very close to the abyss, as he struggles with the task of eking out a living for his ragged (and totally copacetic) little band.

There are some people out there who, myself included, appreciate songs that reach further inside, due to the lyrics or sincerity of the singer’s voice. If you understand, then you’ll need to discover this work of distinctive mournful majesty.

Colin Palmer
” 24/12/2008
The Great British R&B Festival Colne 2008 Tony Winfield & Sue Hickling Blues Matters Nov – Jan 2009 “Down to the Blues Matters stage again (British Stage), for Roadhouse and well worth the walk as this is another Band going from strength to strength. Three female singers with versatile vocal talents and bubbly dance moves, they performad songs from their back catalogue together with new material from their latest album. Some superb guitar playing from Gary and Danny and the whole Band had great fun.” 14/12/2008

Another Great Uk Website Review Alan White Nov 08 “With waves of pulsating rhythms and a punchy powerful delivery, Sea of Souls steers Roadhouse towards the rocky side of the Blues, but being well anchored in the Blues they will undoubtedly increase their shoals of fans. A very satisfying album all round. Highly recommended.
Alan White,
” 06/11/2008

Top Music Review UK Web Site – By Top Promoter Pete Feenstra “Roadhouse Sea of Souls Blues matters BRMCD20082

Roadhouse is something of a unique band. A fiercely independent rock band with 7 solid albums behind them and a prodigious song writer in the shape of founder member, guitarist Gary Boner, this South London based outfit continue to churn out some of the most impressive Southern rock heard this side of the pond.
Working from a sold rock blues foundation, it is Boners Americana drenched imagery that gives the band their USP and eases them on the up escalator.

And if Sea of Souls does in fact restate many of Boner’s previous themes of hope, love, despair, angst and redemption, they are all delivered via immensely enjoyable trips along the Devils Highway which may or may not be inhabited by either a Voodoo Queen or her counterpart the Preacher Man. Indeed the songs paint a picture of surviving life’s never ending rocky road through the triumph of the human spirit over the lyrically elaborated aspects of the devil and despair. And its this life force that comes through loud and clear in the songs. Given the fact Gary Boner’s songs are that much better than anything else on offer at the moment; you are indeed carried along by his lyrics as much as the searing solo’s which both he and fellow guitarist Warren Gwilym fire off at the drop of a hat. So while The Eagles may offer the dark desert highway, Roadhouse deliver similar imagery laden narratives but with a twist.

Sea of Souls is also a well thought out, well produced rock album that when required subtly papers over the cracks of Boner’s passionate latter day Dylan croak. He doesn’t so much rely on the triumvirate of Mandy G, Suzie D and Kelly Marie to reach the necessary vocal peaks as use the resulting harmonies to bring an extra dimension to his lyrics. And as the bands name suggests Roadhouse are a seriously road tested outfit with Bill Hobley & Roger Hunt providing a rock solid foundation for the twin guitar explorations.
The southern rock of Lynyrd Skynyrd, the early vocal styling of Jefferson Airplane and the introspective imagery of Neil Young are all to be found on songs like Lights on the Water, while the quite outstanding plea The Answer is one of Boner’s very best efforts, being a slow building rock ballad with nice guitar touches, a lovely vocal combination and a cute sense of dynamics. The latter is also evident on the introductory post Bo Diddley drum pattern and girlie vocals on the splendid Voodoo Dance and there’s even a Steeleye Span style folksy style intro to Dark River which is ultimately subsumed by a characteristic Roadhouse riff.
And it is the latter guitar break that offers a key to the whole project. After seventeen years and eight or so albums, Roadhouse do indeed have their own trademark sound. In Gary Boner they have a song writer of rare talent and emotional feel while in Mandy G they have a Marlena Dietrich meets Lulu who can effortlessly shift from a sultry growl to a scream as she belts out her lines as on House of the Rising Sun and the riff driven Tumbling Down.

By the time of a reprise of one of their career highlights the southern rock influenced Preacher Man from the Dark Ride CD, you feel like you’ve been through a rocked up arrangement of a Raymond Chandler novel. And let’s face it any album full of songs that can evoke such imagery on the back of some searing guitar work has got to be worth a second listen. Fiery rootsy rock never sounded so good.

**** (4/5)
Review by Pete Feenstra ?

” 02/11/2008
First Retail Review of Sea of Souls Unknown Blues CD Store Bluesletter 408 “After several albums and line ups, Roadhouse are back with a new album. As always guitarist/vocalist Gary Boner with Rhythm section of Bill Hobley, bass and Roger Hunt drums hold it all together. Additionally, they now have three female vocalists and a new guitarist, Danny Gwilym.

Roadhouse have always been a Rock Band giving a nod to the blues and this CD is no exception with the new guitarist keeping it on the rock side. However, this does not mean that those into blues/rock won’t enjoy it, as it’s guitar rock which is definately blues influenced.

The opening a title track ‘Sea of Souls’ lays down the foundation of for the album with a glimpse of whats to come – catchy song showing off female backing vocals and some full on guitar. This is followed by ‘Lights On The Water’, a laid back affair with an atmospheric feel which then picks up into a Fleetwod Mac style vibe circa Tusk. ‘The Answer’ and ‘Voodoo Dance’ evoke 70’s rock with Voodoo Dance starting with a Bo Diddley style drum pattern and then picking up into a straight rocker. The Lying Game’ and ‘Tumbling Down’ show the bluesier side of the Band.and ‘Derk River’ opens with a folky/country style vocal.

The one cover on the CD is ‘House of the Rising Sun’ and Roadhouse produce a superb version with excellent raunchy female vocal and electrifying lead guitar rocking it up.

Throughout the album Gary Boner’s guitar and vocal is a mainstay and augmented by sme fiery guitar work from Danny Gwilym. The female vocals, backing and lead are sounding better than ever and lay a big part in this albums sound.

This is probably the best Roadhouse CD to date and will no doubt be a hit with their ever increasing following and will definately earn them new friends.

Available from BluesCD at œ11.99″ 21/10/2008
Major UK Review Colin Palmer Roak & Reel Magazine – buy in WHSMITHS ETC 12 “ROADHOUSE


Sea Of Souls


Roadhouse are clearly keen to make up for lost time. The London-based blues rockers now front three female vocalists and surprisingly, it works, with the singers taking it in turns on House Of The Rising Sun, The Lying Game and Tumbling Down to pitch for the kind of damaged souls who inhabit the small hours.

Everything within this band serves their songs, so when the guitar burns, or the cymbals crash, it means something — it stokes the fire, builds the tension. Even more than before, Gary Boners lyrics capture the feel of the emotionally and materially desperate, adrift in their own land, revealing the plight of a man at times very close to the abyss, as he struggles with the task of eking out a living for his ragged (and totally copacetic) little band.

There are some people out there who, myself included, appreciate songs that reach further inside, due to the lyrics or sincerity of the singer’s voice. If you understand, then you’ll need to discover this work of distinctive mournful majesty.

Colin Palmer

” 24/09/2008
1st Belgian Review Ton Kok Bobje Blues – Top Belgian Music Review Site August 24th ” Sea Of Souls is the 10th album of the British band Roadhouse in their 17 years of existence. The band was founded in 1991 by Gary Boner (guitar/vocals), Bill Hobley (bass) and Roger Hunt (drums). These three are still playing in the band. Female singers Mandie G. and Suzie D. joined the band late 2005 and new are Danny Gwilym (guitar) and Kelly Marie Hobbs on vocals. To be honest, as rather traditional blues lover, I had to get used to this CD. I really needed a different mindset to judge this record in the right way. After listening to it a couple of times I reached the conclusion that we are dealing with a quite unique band, which is different from any other band I know. It a sort of classic rock band with (caused by the three female singers) sometimes a touch of Gothic and sometimes a touch of Gaelic sound. Two guitar players, one an old school rock guitar player, the other with a more modern sound. A dangerous, yet successful combination. Instrumental and vocally they do a good job and also they also deliver a number of good songs. Nine originals, the only cover House Of The Rising Sun is fitting in well with the other songs, it is played were well, although in my opinion a bit redundant and covered too often. I prefer the originals like Sea Of Souls, a good up tempo opener, the beautiful and melodic Lights On The Water, the bluesy The Lying Game, Tumbling Down, a songs that starts as a classic blues/roots tune, transforming into a modern rocking song, and Preacher Man, a remake of a previously recorded original, which closes the CD in style. No record for the more conservative blues fan, but a very good rock CD.” 23/08/2008
Top Music Review UK Web Site Pete Brown August 24th “Roadhouse – CD – Sea Of Souls

Wow, I liked the last, ‘Broken Land’, album that came my way but, somehow and I’m not actually sure why, I like this one much better. A change has come, a new direction, a whole new feel – and, an impressive feat it is too!

New lead guitarist, now three female ‘voices, a slight move towards rock, new material, new….!! Hey, it’s really cool! Roadhouse seem to have been given a whole new lease of life, a kick up the arse, an injection of something that motivates and focuses the attention. ‘Sea Of Souls’ may not be ‘true blue’ in the old Roadhouse ‘tradition’, it may have more rock leanings but, I tell you what, ‘Sea Of Souls’ bloody well works! Very tasty stuff this!!

I’m trying not to dis the last Roadhouse line-up coz that wouldn’t be fair, the comparison wouldn’t be exactly ‘apples with apples’; the last, recording, line-up was just great, it got the job done and done extremely well. But, here we have a slightly different beast, a new monster being unleashed; ‘Sea Of Souls’ is ‘kin’ excellent, it’s superbly crafted and magnificently executed – the mutt’s nuts! The female vocals work bloody well; either solo, or as backing, or in choral formation – they’re beautifully proportioned and superbly delivered. The new lead guitarist is given just the right amount of ‘free-reign’ to show off his prowess without going totally over-board – as just one ingredient of the final recipe the guitar shapes the whole but doesn’t over-power any other component parts. Roadhouse should be congratulated on this amazing transformation; Roadhouse are still bluesy enough to satisfy the stalwart blues fans but they should now be able to pull in more rock-heads and give them what they want too. It’s a great mix and a fantastic end product.

To say that I’m impressed by ‘Sea Of Souls’ by Roadhouse would be an under-statement; this is a crackin’ album and, for me, Roadhouse have changed for the better. Stunning musicianship, stunning songs, stunning album – actually it’s well, stunning I suppose!!!

Peter J Brown aka toxic pete (

” 15/08/2008
Review of Sea of Souls CD Launch Gig- The Boom Boom Club – Sutton FC – 6/7/08 Darren Wisdom Blues Matters TBC “Roadhouse South London CD Launch – The Boom Boom Club – Sutton FC – 6/7/08

After their barnstorming North London CD launch gig on the Friday, expectations were running sky high for the veteran Gary Boner led Blues/Rock outfit for their South London CD launch show at what is very much a heartland of support for band and Promoters (Pete Feenstra & George McFall) alike. Fair to say that a lot was riding on this showcase gig and Roadhouse were not about to disappoint their ultra loyal fans.

Support for the evening was provided by Roadhouse legend and world class guitarist Drew Barron, backed by a capable rhythm section of Frank Dymore on drums and Pete on bass. Guitarist Tim O’Sullivan also joined the band for the final couple of songs. Drews virtuoso jazz/blues lines are always so reminiscent of UK jazz/rock fusioner Allan Holdsworth and the band left the stage to warm applause after having delivered a coolly measured opening set.

Kicking off with Sea Of Souls Roadhouse displayed surefooted form and locked straight into the rocky mid-paced groove on this, the opening track from their new album of the same title. A delicate high hat figure from drummer Roger Hunt counted in the second song, the atmospheric Lights On The Water, a long, spacious, winding song that builds beautifully from a slow, haunting intro and reels in the listener setting them up for a killer trademark Gary Boner chorus hook. Next up was Help Me, and old Sonny Boy Williamson number featuring all three Roadhouse female vocalists (looking absolutely stunning dressed in black) and the first of only two covers in the bands set. The familiar churning blues guitar riff of No Place To Hide, an upbeat straight ahead rocker with slide guitar punctuating another signature Gary Boner riff to demonstrable audience appreciation. The scene was thus set for Slip Away (also from the album No Place To Hide), a pure Gary Boner song this, with its recurrent themes of loss, pain, death and longing. Despite Garys predilection towards dark themes as a writer, Roadhouse gigs are always joyous, uplifting affairs and so it proved with the next song The Lying Game, featuring the gorgeous, pure blues inflected tones of vocalist Suzie D. At just 21, her assured vocal belied her youth to deliver this tale of infidelity and deceit with panache.

Next was Roadhouses reading of that timeless Animals song, House Of The Rising Sun. Roadhouse legend, Mandie G., delivered a sensuous, searing, soaring vocal that held the audience in its thrall. Guitarist Danny Gwilym added fuel to the fire with a measured swooping solo that matched and complemented Mandies heartfelt vocal perfectly. Possessed of a powerful voice, Mandie made the song her own, the slow tempo allowing her the space to build up to a crushing crescendo that was enough to strip paint off the club walls.

Following Mandie Gs tour de force might have been daunting for new Roadhouse recruit, Kelly Marie Hobbs, but she stepped up to the plate in fine style to deliver a polished vocal performance for the radio play favourite The Big Easy (from the Broken Land album). At only 24, its surely still early days for her yet but she has great potential and is a talent to watch for the future.

The band then returned to the Sea Of Souls album for Voodoo Dance, an upbeat, and drum heavy number. For this song the band were augmented on stage by Frank Dymore on percussion. Telling Lies followed, and then The Answer, a beautifully haunting, melancholy ballad that is perhaps the standout track on the new album. Once again the familiar Boner themes of existential searching, yearning and the human condition are explored in this powerful song that shifts up-tempo mid way through to a melodic guitar solo section. I must say that Gary has improved immeasurably as a guitarist over the past few years, leaning into solos with great conviction.

The room was then filled with doom laden guitar arpgeggios, heralding what is always the main event of any Roadhouse gig, Preacher Man. This slow, wind swept piece of Americana is what the band are all about, and in a more just world would form a soundtrack to the greatest spaghetti western never made and is a perfect example of Garys cinematic song writing style. Audience appreciation was clearly (and loudly!) articulated at this point and it was clear that the band werent going to be allowed to go anywhere without first playing an encore, luckily Gary was on hand to lead the band into a rousing White Water, from the Broken Land album, propelled along by Bill Hobleys ultra solid bass playing.

At the end of the evening with thoughts of the last train home to North London fast approaching, I thanked the band and friends (honourable mention here goes to Robin Bibi) and made my way home in a state of elevation… Why can’t every Sunday evening be like that?

Darren Wisdom
” 31/07/2008
Maverick Country Blues Magazine Review Nick Dalton Maverick TBC “Roadhouse
Sea Of Souls
BluesMatters BRMCD20082
Finest yet from rootsy rockers

Roots-rockers Roadhouse have undergone countless line-up changes, with more lead guitarists than the Yardbirds. But, while that would leave many bands on their knees, they feed off the energy, each newcomer (or several) bringing a new feel to each new album. And there have been a number of records, all with an underlying unity thanks to frontman/singer/guitarist Gary Boner and his desperate, hard-rocking songs which regularly become six-minute cinematic epics.
The line-up here is as good as any the London band have ever had. Still at the back are the rock-solid rhythm section of bassist Bill Hobley and drummer Roger Hunt. But, needless to say, theres another new lead guitarist. This time its Danny Gwilym who steers things in a rockier direction than the bluesy former incumbent Drew Barron. And while the band have always had a girl singer they now have three, regular Roadhouse member Mandie G joined by Suzie D and Kelly Marie Hobbs. The result is unusual. One moment theyre lead vocalists, the next a backing choir, the next voices which dart in and out of Boners own vocals.
Roadhouse music veers between rock, blues and country-roots with astonishing speed, Boners own guitar giving a country jangle to dark material which conjures up a bleak American landscape full of rivers and deserts, preachers and redemption. The expansive numbers are here, more than ever. There are new numbers  Lights On The Water, The Dark Of The Sun, and the catchy Voodoo Dance with its thumping drums, speed guitar solo and girly harmonies  while the band revisit their signature song, Preacher Man, closing the album with an hypnotic six-minute blast. Thats not to say there arent shorter songs too  the title track and the bubbly Tumbling Down  while a long-time live favourite, House Of The Rising Sun, emerges with smouldering, Joplinesque vocals from Mandie G.
Powerful and intelligent, rootsy music that crosses all the borders.
www.bluesmatters” 24/07/2008
Croatian Review of Sea of Souls “Mladen Lon
ar – Mike, Ponedjeljak, 14 Srpanj 2008” (Croatian Music/Review Site 14th Sepetember 2008 “Najnoviji album Sea of Souls izvrsnog blues/rock banda Roadhouse iz Engleske ugledao je svijetlo dana, pod ravnanjem diskografske kue BM! Records.
Velikom anga~iranoau i ~eljom za promocijom osobno Gary Bonera, osniva
a benda Roadhouse, imam jedinstvenu prigodu i veliko zadovoljstvoi predstaviti Vam gore spomenuti album.

Svi Vi koji pratite emisiju Rock  Oko imali ste se prigode ve susresti sa ovim izvrsnim bandom, preko njihovih proalih albuma No Place To Hide, Roadhouse & Friends – Live i Broken Land, ve samo ta tri albuma garantiraju nam zaista osobit glazbeni u~itak.

Svojim najnovijim albumom Roadhouse samo su potvrdili svoju kvalitetu i renomirani status koji su upravo tom svojom kvalitetom izgradili. Od 1991. pa do danas Roadhouse nastupali su sa zaista velikim i poznatim imenima kada je u pitanju bluz glazba i to: Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones), Eric Bell (Thin Lizzy), Paul Jones (Manfredd Mann/The Blues Band), Otis Grand, 9 Below Zero, The Pirates, Stan Webb’s Chicken Shack, Walter Trout, a mo~da nije poznato, ali nastupali su i sa legendarnim The Yardbirdsima.

Album Sea of Souls donosi nam zaista atraktivnu playlistu odnosno izbor skladbi, pa stoga ovdje ~elim istaknuti koje skladbe su me se najviae dojmile, a to su: naslovna Sea Of Souls, Voodoo Dance, njihova obrada poznate House of the Rising Sun, pored toga svakako treba istaknuti nadahnute pjesme: The Lying Game, Dark River, Tumbilg Down i razigranu i vrlo efektnu temu Preacher Man.

Gary Boner je glazbenik ( vokal, solo i ritam gitara) koji predvodi ovaj izvrsni band a uz njega tu su joa i:
Danny Gwilym – solo i ritam gitara
Bill Hobley  bas gitara
Roger Hunt  bubnjevi
Mandie C  vokali
Suzie D  vokali
Kelly Marie Hobbs – vokali

Roadhouse su joa jedanput opravdali povjerenje i svoju neosporivu kvalitetu. Album Sea Of Souls
vrsto stoji na temeljima najbolje tradicije rock n’ bluesa. a kombinacija ova dva stila uz istaknute back vokale oduvijek su bile ono ato krasi bend Roadhouse.

Gary Boner nije dozvolio bilo kakva iznenaenja, ve je uporabio provjerenu formulu: efektna solo gitara i opori vokal,
vrsti ritam, fascinantni back vokali, a sve to je rezultiralo albumom, koji svojim kompletnim ugoajem moraju zadovoljiti ama baa svakoga. Kao i svaki iskusni glazbenik Gary Boner igra na ‘zicera’, jer si ne ~eli dopustiti nikakav propust. On jednostavno tra~i da glazbe bude u prvom planu, da sve bude podreeno njoj. Moram istaknuti da me je uvijek veselio njegov jedinstveni i nadasve specifi
an glazbeni izri
aj. Kako ga god mi nazivali on je jednako poseban, efektan i raritetan.

Album Sea Of Souls osobitog banda Roadhouse svakako preporu
am nabaviti ,a to mo~ete u
initi, kao i o svemu saznati viae na:

Popis pjesama:

01. Sea Of Souls
02. Lights On The Water
03. The Answer
04. Voodoo Dance
05. House Of The Rising Sun
06. The Lying Game
07. Dark River
08. Tumbilg Down
09. The Dark Of The Sun
10. Preacher Man

(BM! Records
” 18/07/2008
First Review Of – Sea of Souls Pete Sargeant Fair Hearing Music Review Website 5/6/08 “Like Paul Kantner of the Jefferson Airplane/Starship axis, key writer and leader of UK band Roadhouse Gary Boner consistently manages to assemble multi-talented lineups of male and female performers. As soon as one hotshot guitar player or stylish chanteuse bids adieu (maybe to return in later years as has Mandie G) Boner comes up with another star for their own stint in the lineup. With longtime bassist and drummer partnership Bill and Roger underpinning the widescreen sound this group attains, Gary is able to effect changes and retain the bands cohesion and it is fair to say, personality. Roadhouse gigs tend to be driven but good natured gatherings and the material allows for the odd rise and fall or mood of the night detours.
However while Kantner mines the intergalactic psych/folkrock vein so favoured by this site, the Roadhouse canon is darker, swampier, dustier. Its a film noir ambience much of the time but with boogie and mellow excursions. With Boner the songs themes are not likely to be My youre attractive, lets have a dance together but more No one will find out if we get rid of the body I blame his early obsession with films like Chinatown and tv detective series. Now, you may be thinking, does this mean we get to hear miserable Nick Cave type doomdirges and the answer is not at all, because the three female vocalists bring so much colour to the proceedings, individually or as a chorale ; they also offset Garys growling singing style to create something fresh. I would say that aside from the odd flash of early Delaney & Bonnie, Roadhouses overall sound is pretty much their own. This plus the spring in the step of the dual lead guitars mean that the songs burst along rather than plod. New axeman Danny has in the past sat in with the group on shows hence he fits in very easily on this first outing for the current lineup.
With classy artwork from Vaughan Oliver a friend of the group and sought after designer, Sea of Souls represents what Boner feels to be his best works so far. Usually songs are broken in at live shows before recording so I have heard some of these tunes in their nascent form ahead of these studio recorded editions. Lights On The Water has a tapped cymbal intro and floating chorusd guitar weave that could easily open a dark movie ; The Answer echoes the great Marshall Tucker Band with Danny using the volume control to bring violin like notes into the sound, what a sweet chorale the ladies achieve here ! So atmospheric ; Voodoo Dance is a 6/8 stomp nodding to New Orleans but driving rock to please most headbangers ; Dark River has a gospel feel but with the trademark Roadhouse rhythm section punch, lyric on a hellfire preacher theme. To achieve variety the group features Mandie G on a version of House Of The Rising Sun which amazingly they manage to pull off ( let Suzie loose on Dont Bring Me Down, Gary! ). The guitar interplay on Dark River is stunning, by the way.
Roadhouse  a big notion, but a realised notion

Pete Sargeant
” 05/07/2008
Skegness Blues Rock Festival 2008 Tony Winfield & Sue Hickling Blues Matters May/June 08 “Following Reviews of Dr Feelgood, Maggie Bell, John Otway and Wilco Johnson:

Roadhouse were performing a laid back acoustic set in more comfortable surroundings. We have seen Roadhouse numerous times, bu this was the first time unplugged. A change of line up since last year, With Danny Gwillym replacing Drew on lead guitar, and a third female singer, Kelly Hobbs, has been added. The unplugged format suited them, giving the girls more chance to display their diverse vocal styles.

Main Stage Show:
Roadhouse followed with a terrific blast of both old and new numbers. Danny demonstrating what a superb knack they have of recruiting talented guitrists, giving one of the best axe performances of the weekend. They continued with the 3 girl format, who enjoyed themselves during instumental breaks, dancing round the stage…..” 14/06/2008
Yorkshire Feedback The Editor/Webmaster Rock of the North – Englands Biggest Music Site Following April Gigs in Yorkshire “Rock Of The North –

Wow! Thats been some weekend Arf! Good feedback to us as well!Roadhouse are a band I already knew about from my Blues Matters days and it wont be too long before Egypt are back.When you list these bands in a couple of paragraphs, it makes you realise what a lot of talent there is around the region!!!! ” 10/05/2008
A View From the Crowd – Skegness 2008 A Punter From The Blues Forum – On Line BM Forum “Roadhouse  followed the Brew and, without doubt, boasted the best guitarist of the festival. And believe me, there were plenty of wonderful guitarists on view. Dont know his name but he was fucking fantastic. Fast, stretching his fingers across huge distances on the fretboard, lightning-quick. He played one riff which almost brought me to tears (must be my age). I loved Tellin Lies (fantastic lick) and House of the RS. This was guitar greatness. Where the feck has this guy been? Didnt catch his name, Im afraid, but young Jason from the Brew would do well to get a few tips  Im sure it would help. The girls in the band were talented……

” 09/03/2008
Colne National R&B Festival Paul Abraham Colne Official Site/Leeds Music Promotions The Magnificent 7 – Top 7 Bands at Colne “colne festival 2007 THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN!!!! – SEVEN BANDS WERE REVIEWED BY PAUL ABRAHAM FROM LEEDS MUSIC PROMOTIONS……… ROADHOUSE BEEN ONE OF THEM ROADHOUSE While some of the hardcore Blues fans may have found Roadhouse more of a rock-blues band, they would have had to acknowledge what a talented and professional band this is. I personally felt some Pink Floyd / Mostly Autumn vibes, as the two female singers took the music to a harmonious level to compliment the excellent musicianship from the other band members. reviewed by paul abraham for the colne festival 2007

” 08/09/2007
Butlins Rock & Blues Festival – Skegness – Jan 2007 Tony Winfield & Sue Hickling Blues Matters Apr/May 07 “Sunday evening and Butlin’s regulars Roadhouse were first up on the big stage. A new line up from previous times that we had seen them, with Mandie.G and Suzie Dingle on the vocals.

They were as superb as ever as they ripped through a selection from their ever- expanding repetoire, including the terrific Voodoo Queen.” 28/05/2007
Roadhouse at The Crwdaddy Club – Essex Blues Festival – Hospice Charity – 2006 Ashwyn Smith Blues Maters Magazine FEB/MARCH 07 – No 36 “And so, to the headline act and, indeed, the very first act that was booked for the Festival, the superb Roadhouse. The last time they played the Crawdaddy was in late 2005 at what was the final gig with the line-up that included Lorna Reilly & Jules Fothergill, now part of funkydory who you can see at the Club on Thursday November 9th. With two superb female singers, Mandie G and the amazing 19 years old Susie D, plus new guitarist Drew Barron, this was our first chance to catch this ?new? line-up which has been creating quite a stir, and with good cause. Gary Boner plus his long term rhythm section of Bill Hobley on bass and Roger Hunt on drums turned in a storming final set featuring a number of tracks from the band?s latest Blues Matters! CD, the superb ?Broken Land? as well as tracks from previous CDs. All in all they treated the audience to a fine rocking set that gave the lady vocalists every chance to shine as well as treating all the guitar nuts to some great duelling guitars as Gary & Drew jousted with their instruments. A superb finale to an excellent day which was marred by the low turn out.
Still it was a brilliane day with some really superb performances that saw just over œ1,000 raised for the Little Haven Children’s Hospice
” 25/03/2007
Roadhouse at The Crwdaddy Club – Essex Blues Festival – Hospice Charity – 2006 Ashwyn Smith Crawdaddy News “And so, to the headline act and, indeed, the very first act that was booked for the Festival, the superb Roadhouse. The last time they played the Crawdaddy was in late 2005 at what was the final gig with the line-up that included Lorna Reilly & Jules Fothergill, now part of funkydory who you can see at the Club on Thursday November 9th. With two superb female singers, Mandie G and the amazing 19 years old Susie D, plus new guitarist Drew Barron, this was our first chance to catch this ?new? line-up which has been creating quite a stir, and with good cause. Gary Boner plus his long term rhythm section of Bill Hobley on bass and Roger Hunt on drums turned in a storming final set featuring a number of tracks from the band?s latest Blues Matters! CD, the superb ?Broken Land? as well as tracks from previous CDs. All in all they treated the audience to a fine rocking set that gave the lady vocalists every chance to shine as well as treating all the guitar nuts to some great duelling guitars as Gary & Drew jousted with their instruments. A superb finale to an excellent day which was marred by but one thing ? why did so few people turn up?
œ10.00 to see 10 acts over a 10 hour period, and yet quite a bit less than a hundred paying customers passed through the doors. I simply do not understand it and it is poor recompense to the artists and to the team that worked so hard and long to put it all together.

” 13/01/2007
Roadhouse at the Wingate & Finchley Club – 17/9/06 Rob White MSN & REVIEW WEBSITES “Two gigs in one weekend, things are looking up!
I personally found the Roadhouse shows to be much more entertaining when they performed a set on their own rather than the jam sessions Gary used to take so much trouble to organise. They have a good varied repertoire of songs and deliver them with much finesse.
Tonight we had Drew Barron on vocals and lead guitar, and Mandie G on vocals alongside Roger Hunt on drums, Bill Hobley on bass, and of course Gary Boner on vocals and second lead guitar.
We also had the first exercising of the marvellous PA system which had graced the Green Man in Barnet. Vince brought it along and set it and the spotlights up, and it was perfect. A lovely balanced sound, which although pretty loud was perfectly clear and with total silence in the quiet passages. Thanks Vince!
The closing number of the first set was “”Rock Me Baby”” and boy, did it rock! Drew and Gary stopped taking turns in the limelight and did some beautiful synchronised stringing. There’s something about the sound of two guitars wailing like banshees in total harmony that gets the neck-hairs standing to attention. Brilliant stuff. I hadn’t really heard much of Drew’s playing live before, but he really is very good. Smiling, having fun, and nicely self-effacing while delivering stunning licks and slide.
Mandie G has one hell of a voice, and despite the lack of assistance tonight from other members of Gary’s harem dealt us a superb show. How she can keep going all evening like that, with only a couple of breaks, I can’t imagine. Her showcase version of “”Knocking on Heaven’s Door”” would have made Bob Dylan very proud, I’m sure.
If only we can get more quality acts like this to the Wingate & Finchley club, and more than the usual handful of regulars in the audience to enjoy the great facilities, then we should be in for some fine gigs.
Rating: ” 01/10/2006
Broken Land Review 5 Alan Harvey Blues In Britain “UK ? ROADHOUSE: No Place To Hide
Blues Matters! Records. 10 tracks, 55.04 mins.
As a lover of things Roadhouse, both live and studio, I guess I start from a positive base. Nevertheless, it has been clear from gigs during the last six months that the songs new to the band?s repertoire were something special. Gary Boner, guitarist / singer, has already established a name for himself as a fine songwriter, but he has excelled himself this time.
The CD opener and title track is already a live favourite and literally kicks us off in fine rocking style. Jules Fothergill has a lovely fluid style and his slide combines with Gary to set the tempo. Gary?s vocals then take over with Lorna Reilly in support before Jules rips into more rocking slide. The whole band works in changes of tempo leading to a storming finish. That description could give you a typical Roadhouse song, but track two tells you that this CD doesn?t propose to conform to any pattern! Gary?s gentle chords and drummer Roger Hunt?s soft tapping introduce Slip Away. Gary sings about advancing years, approaching demise and dreams slipping away?..a sad subject, but within the context of a very fine tune. Jules is at his best here, playing in restrained, but moving style. A truly wonderful song.
Jules co-wrote two tracks with Gary, helping to emphasise the slight change in style from earlier CD?s. Lost Along The Way has latin tones from both guitarists, gentle grooves from Jules and more aggressive lead from Gary. Don?t Point That Thing At Me is a funkier tune with a touch of humour (females using the title in conversations with males!). The setting of the song is American, as with many Roadhouse songs. This no doubt helps the band?s popularity across the water.
Anne Campbell takes lead vocals on the only cover, Brooklyn Blues. This a lovely song and helps to emphasise the band?s versatility. Anne?s starring role on this CD, however, is as co-writer of the final track, Killing Time. This is quite a departure from the norm. A gentle, but beautiful, song it features some metronomic rhythm from Gary, almost echoing the ticking clock, together with soft vocals from Gary and new addition Sue Ballingall. Jules overlays with some stunning guitar and the whole effect is superb.
One of the stand-out tracks perversely nods at the band?s past with a song from their first CD. Couldn?t Get To Sleep is an epic 8 minute track and is Roadhouse at their best. Bill Hobley on bass and Roger Hunt lay the foundations superbly for the front line to treat us to music of the highest quality. Jules is quite awesome with his slide lead and Gary supremely effective on rhythm. Sue features with Gary during the first part of the song. After a super solo from Jules, Lorna gets centre stage with some of her searing vocals to bring the track to it?s rousing conclusion. Wonderful.
The whole CD is a wonderful and varied collection of songs played to the highest standard by a group of fine musicians. It deserves to take the band on to a higher level. I strongly recommend it ????..Alan Harvey
” 22/05/2006
Broken Land Review 4 Pete Sargeant Blues Matters April/May 2006 “ROADHOUSE
Broken Land
Blues Matters 11 Tracks
With personnel and personal changes to absorb and come through, this latest studio set from UK stalwarts finds Gary Boner and his Roadhouse crew delivering another quality batch of songs. With Jules Fothergill now at the helm of FunkyDory and Lorna Reilly part of the latter, Boner has Canadian guitarist vocalist Drew Barron contributing fluid axelines as Gary?s foil in the guitar arrangements. Of course and as ever the real heroes of this collection are Bill and Roger the rhythm section par excellence, always driving but never showing off, these guys are exemplary band players it must be said. Hence returning vocal siren Mandy G and new girl Fiona McElroy are immediately at ease and singing their hearts out ; I would go so far as to say that the backing vocal lines on ?Redemption Street? are as good as any Roadhouse lineup ever and they lift the Skynyrdy composition to its advantage, aided by Mr Hunt?s martial drumming. Versions of Dylan and U2 numbers benefit from brilliant sax interludes and it?s a credit to the band how such additions are easily handled and featured. For variety ?Pulp Fiction Zoo? and the strange ?Mexican Nights? follow through on Boner?s cinematic leaning. As ?Big Easy? and the spiky opener ?White Water? attest, each Roadhouse release has the feel of a debut, an achievement after many releases. I think Gary would admit that he is a dark compositional mode at present but colours abound on this album and as anyone must know by now, Roadhouse are a formidable live act..onwards then !
Pete Sargeant
” 22/05/2006
Broken Land Review 3 Pete Feenstra Pete Website – May 2006 “It’s rare for an independent label band to have such a prodigious song-writer as Roadhouse leader/guitarist Gary Boner, but with “”Broken Land”” the band’s 9th album, he has surpassed even his previous excellent efforts.

The key to Roadhouse’s Americana road anthems resides in some excellent pre production planning with Gary’s mid range vocals being bolstered two female singers. Fiona McElroy, and Mandy G switch from bv’s to lead vocals in a rip roaring set that straddles Rock, Blues and Americana.

The opening Jefferson Airplane sounding “”White Water”” is a classy slice of West Coast rock while another album highlight is the Dylan inflected “”Redemption Song””. The barnstorming title track belies its dark imagery with a searing chorus full of superb slide guitar.

In short, this album is crammed full of magical moments. And while there is a dip into the Dylan catalogue for “”All Along The Watch Tower”” – complete with a lovely sax solo – and Mandy’s tour de force, “”Knocking On Heavens Door””, it is the original songs that really stand out.

Listen to the anthemic “”Last Train Home””, and you are put in mind of classic Southern rock, while the biting irony of “”Pulp Fiction 2″” brings with it a sonic dimension not unlike Amon Duul2.

But for the most part “”Broken Land “” is a cd full of great playing with some lovely slide from Canadian Drew Barron, killer songs from Gary Boner and the kind of exuberant choruses that in a previous age would have generated even more radio play than the band have already enjoyed.
” 22/05/2006
Broken Land Review 2 Toxic Pete Top Blues Website “Roadhouse – CD – Broken Land

This top quality release from the hard working Roadhouse demonstrates that the British ‘blues’ scene is not only still strong but thriving. Superbly modelled in every aspect, ‘Broken Land’ has all of its i’s dotted and t’s crossed; nothing has been overlooked, nothing has been left to chance. The high standard of production allows the listener to access every second of every song without ever having to concentrate – superb clarity and tight instrumentation seem to part and parcel of the Roadhouse approach.
The first thing I noticed as this work unfolded was the stunning tightness of this unit. Then the depth and variety of feel made an appearance. Apart from the superb musicianship on display here there’s the fact that Roadhouse use three vocalists which keeps the feel fresh and alive. Of the eleven tracks, nine are originals (a plus for me), and impressive pieces they are too! Instrumentation selection is excellent as Roadhouse flit from using one lead guitar with rhythm support to twin leads and back again. The introduction of guest alto sax on two tracks further enhances the classy feel of this album.
Instrumentally I can’t fault this work or this band. Vocally they mix it up beautifully and loads of thought has gone into the arrangements here. Generally, Roadhouse tend to shy away from the long drawn-out guitar solos which can be over-used and can become tedious; they keep things in this department tidy and concise. When a longer lead break is called upon it’s kept interesting and fresh by the constant changes in fx and styles. Not one of yer stereotypical blues breaks in sight – thankfully. The twin lead vocals of Mandie G and Fiona McElroy are set well against the gruffer sounding voice of Gary Boner – just occasionally there’s a hint of latter day Fleetwood Mac here. The ‘girls’ concentrate on their vocal strengths whilst Boner and Drew Barron both lay down lead and rhythm guitar. The rhythm back-line is supplied with uncanny tightness and superb touch and feel by bassman Bill Hobley and drummer/percussionist Roger Hunt. The six come together as one to produced a wonderfully precise unit.
Roadhouse’s ability to mix it up sets them apart from many of their contemporaries and ‘Broken Land’ is an excellent piece of work that although sitting pretty much in the blues genre manages to incorporate a light rock edge and a hint of ‘world’ music. This is a beautifully put together album that deserves to do well for the impressive Roadhouse.
Peter J Brown aka toxic pete (
(Rhythm & Booze rating 9)

” 22/05/2006
Broken Land Review Nick Dalton Maverick “Roadhouse
Broken Land
Blues Matters BRMCD20061
Triumph from Britain’s leading country rockers
The London roots rockers who never stand still release another album with yet another line-up. They get through guitarists faster than Rod Stewart gets through wives. Yet that does mean they?re always on edge, always pushing forward. Some might have felt that losing British guitar prodigy Jules Fothergill could be a setback but mainmain Gary Boner has found an excellent (and very different) replacement in Canadian Drew Barron.
The songs are still a raging country-roots blend of imagery – rivers, trains, desolate countryside – but the textures are different again, Barron bringing a softer, mystical feel up against Boner?s rock jangle.
Roadhouse?s trademark twin girl singers – more than backing vocals, sometimes soloists but always there like a wind whistling around the Boner/Barron twin guitar attack – are still there. Yet different – one of the band?s earliest members, Mandie G, has returned, joined by newcome Fiona McElroy, the latter taking centre stage on the choogling, spine-tingling rocker Still Haven?t Found.
The set kicks off with a classic Roadhouse rampage, White Water, great tune, great guitars and male-female vocals winding around each other.
The rhythm section of Roger Hunt and Bill Hobley (band originals along with Boner) are darker and dirtier than ever as they tackle moody originals like Pulp Fiction and the West Coast-sounding The Big Easy. What?s also impressive is how the band manage to take what some might see as a hoary covers and turn them around. All Along The Watchtower becomes a bleak barroom workout, complete with smokey sax by Fred Schmid. And Knocking On Heaven?s Door
The Spanish guitar driven Mexican Nights is a new approach for the band before they return to familiar ground for the rampant finale Last Train Home. A killer record from a band who deserve to be much bigger. ND
Available from
” 22/05/2006
Loft Club – Barnet – 30/5/05 Rob White Rob White/Pete Feenstra’s Website “Roadhouse
Well, this was another excellent evening at The Green Man in Barnet!

I’ve had a new-found respect for Roadhouse after their gig at the Rayners supporting Ian Parker, which was just perfect. I had become tired of the self-indulgent “”Roadhouse & Friends”” jam sessions, but when they played their own set it was excellent.

And so it was tonight. With another new girl singer, Fiona, joining the excellent Lorna on vocals, the audiovisual show was spot on! Gary treats his harem very fairly, giving them all a share of the spotlight, he even recalled Anne to sing on few numbers. Where else could you see a fine band like this with not one, not two, but three great girl singers?

The material was a mixture of the familiar Roadhouse back catalogue plus some recent winners from their new CD – “”Sacrifice”” was particularly good – and even some tired old standards like “”Stormy Monday”” were given a great workout by Lorna.

Jules told me he was eschewing effects pedals tonight, and I liked the pure tone he achieved, along with the brilliant slide work for which he has become renowned. And at times the interplay between Jules and Gary worked really well, I just love that twin-guitar sound.

Jules told me he was eschewing effects pedals tonight, and I liked the pure tone he achieved, along with the brilliant slide work for which he has become renowned. And at times the interplay between Jules and Gary worked really well, I just love that twin-guitar sound.

The veteran Roadhousers in the background, Bill ‘n’ Rog, have been in the band for going on fourteen years, Gary informed us. And their great professionalism is a joy to witness – in fact the whole band, old and new seem to get on so well it really works like a dream.

The finale Voodoo Queen was really great with Lorna and Fiona belting out the lyrics and Jules and Gary doing some great duelling. We demanded an encore, and got it, Gary showing great respect for the pub management and politely asking if it was really OK to do another song.

So, in summary, a really good, happy, professional show. As I said above, an excellent evening.
” 01/06/2005
“Roadhouse – “”No Place To Hide”” – Blues Matters” Pete Feenstra Website “It may seem strange that two of the most impressive Americana style albums of the year should come from European bands, but as Roadhouse prove there’s no better currency than great songs. And guitarist/vocalist and song writer Gary Boner has a truckload. Aside from some scintillating guitar from young Jules Fothergill and fine bv’s from Anne Campbell and Lorna Reilly, Boner’s songs are a cut above most of the bands that purport to set the standard in the Roots field.Look no further than the title track, or the brooding bluesy style of “”Slip Away”” or the Jefferson Airplane feel of “”Couldn’t Get To Sleep”” to hear a superb mix of road anthems, crammed full of Deep South imagery.” 27/05/2005
“Roadhouse – Willem Tell Blues Club, St Lenaarts, Belgium: 19th Feb 2005” Steven Verhoeven “” Online Blues Reviews “Roadhouse is in the Belgian bluesscene something we like to call a noble unknown. Except for the chosen few who were able to experience a show of the ?best kept secret of the UK?, there weren?t too many people in the Benelux who would turn their heads when they hear the name ?Roadhouse?, despite the 1500 (!) gigs in the UK.

Bobtje Blues, a Belgian promotor, was determined to get them to the mainland after seeing them perform last summer in England. This is the review of a show in a bluesclub called The Willem Tell, in St-Lenaarts, near Antwerp. A lot of blueslovers showed up for the gig, and nobody knew exactly what to expect of this English band some people were talking about. As the first set started (with ?Blues Highway?) I got the feeling we were about to witness a gig everybody would be talking about. Gary Boner (vocals, guitar and founding member) and Jules Fothergill (guitar player and ?slidewonder?) were setting standards in a blues rock song, where there was also an eminent role for the backing vocals of Lorna Reilly and Anne Campbell.

After the second song (?Not Fade Away?, a Buddy Holly-song with a nice touch of Diddley) it became clear that it?s not that easy to put these four guys and two ladies in one category. Although it?s obvious that Roadhouse was born as a child of the blues, calling them a bluesband would be disrespectful. They are so much more? To justify the term ?bluesband?, I would like to refer to the first-rate versions of ?Help Me? (original by Sonny Boy Williamson) or ?Rock Me Baby? and ?Stormy Monday?, both sung by Reilly, who is blessed with a heavenly voice.

Bassplayer Bill Hobley, drummer Roger Hunt and earlier mentioned Boner, are a trinity that knows no equal (and I don?t mean the Holy Trinity, because there?s a devilish side to their playing?). The other thing that definitely contributes to the inherent sound of Roadhouse, are the unique vocals of the ladies. Jules closes the line. Arriving in Belgium he got struck by foodpoisoning, but it didn?t show. On top of all that class, Gary Boner writes songs that fit the band perfectly. ?Lost Along The Way? or ?Slip Away? (both from their last album ?No Place To Hide?) are, in my opinion, magnificent songs. They make me shiver, over and over again.

As mentioned earlier, Roadhouse isn?t a band with one style? they?re a band with their own style. If you love blues, rock, and all that is in between, Roadhouse is a band you cannot and should not ignore. And as for myself, a diehard blues lover, I have to admit that Roadhouse is responsible for a shifting in my cd-player.

Anyway, I consider myself lucky for becoming aware of Roadhouse, and I hope I?ll see them soon on a Belgian stage again. And if that ain?t gonna happen, I?ll cross the channel next year, that?s a promise (or a threat?)!” 02/03/2005
“Roadhouse – The Boom Boom Club, Sutton: 4th May 2003” Alan Harvey Blues Matters! June 2003 “I should be ashamed of myself… on two counts. Firstly I hadn’t seen Roadhouse until the Boogaloo Festival at Bognor in January and secondly this was their 1500th gig and only my second. In truth it was number 1498, but among such lovely people and on such a brilliant evening of fine music who cares?

The band have been in the business of the blues for 12 years with occasional changes of personnel in that time and a high percentage of their gigs have been their famous jam evenings. As a result they are as much a family as a blues band. On this evening we were treated to an intriguing mix of new and old with Joe Hollywood kicking proceedings off, former member Doctor Noel Brown singing through his enormous cigar and (among others) Drew Barron, John O’Leary and Robin Bibi all taking a turn. We also had the experience of Blues Matters’ own Pete Sargeant on harp accompanying that excellent guitarist Robin Bibi on I Loved Another Woman and Long Grey Mare. Roadhouse then took to the stage for four of their best songs: Blues Highway (title track of their current wonderful CD), Tellin Lies, Back Streets and Gary Boner’s favourite Voodoo Queen. They did them all proud and they did us proud, but they weren’t finished yet. They continued with a little help from their friends. Pete Sargeant was back up for Help Me, Robin Bibi and Noel Brown both had another chance to display their skills and the finale saw Drew Barron back onstage with the band for another great Gary Boner composition, Preacher Man. Superb stuff, all gratefully received by the appreciative audience. In truth the crowd was smaller than I expected (and certainly smaller than the band and their guests deserved), but we all had a great time.

If you missed this one catch another one soon!” 21/11/2004
Roadhouse – Blues Highway – Music Media RHCD006 Pete Sargeant Blues Matters! Feb 2003 “Right from the dramatic opener ‘Desert Sky’ with its ominous chords, conspiratorial Gary Boner vocal and cool female chorale, South London’s finest take you on quite a trip through their take on American-influenced music. Blues-tinged to the max, this set sees the fresh air of a West Coast/Airplane breeziness which propels the tracks through various soundscapes and the overall sound is aurally panoramic and all the better for that. The songs are delivered with vigour and pride, with Boner’s gritty guitar stylings meshing and sparking across his axe cohort Jules Fothergill’s punchy dexterity; these are thinking listeners’ musicians always serving the songs rather than their own indulgences. Fans of the moody guitar solo can purchase this release with confidence but there is SO much going on here and no small contribution is made by the two female singers aboard for this set, Anne Campbell whose growing comfortableness on stage gives this hardworking band a trump card and the sadly-now-departed Billi Shaw. Shrieking is eschewed in favour of atmospheric singing, well-placed in the arrangements.

The atmospheric element of this set cannot be denied and I think this gives the album international appeal – well no I don’t just think, I know because our US compadre Mick Martin has played excerpts from this disc on his West Coast/Internet KXJZ radio show to great interest and acclaim. In fact these selections play well amongst the Allman Brothers, Johnny Winter and Delaney & Bonnie tracks that feature in the broadcasts; over the last weeks US fans’ Emails have been bounced on to the band here in England so that the word can be spread by the artists themselves.

Bill Hobley provides pumping, spacey bass lines and you won’t find a better band drummer than drummer Roger Hunt so all in all this crew don’t want for much – they just want more people to switch on to what they’re doing. They prove that you can entertain and ring the changes on material, witness the New Orleans-style funk of ‘Voodoo Queen’ and the expansive restlessness of the title track. Play-safe this group are not.

Gary Boner regards this release as a major step on for the band and this is evident. RoadHouse also host splendid live music club evenings accommodating all manner of star guests and other groups whose approach they feel a kinship for, a self-propelled scene that deserves support as well providing audiences with truly special nights and unusual line-ups.

Hard to pick a favourite cut from a collection this strong but repeated plays point me towards the Shaw/Boner composition ‘Dark Rain’ a haunting song with a Nick Drake style intro, rolling rhythm not a huge distance from heyday Fairport (ie bloody good!) crisp drumming and a mentholated sax solo (Andy Thompson) topped by an arcanely paced guitar run from Jules.

Quality and soul in equal measure, there may not be a better homegrown release this winter…” 21/11/2004
Roadhouse – Blues Highway – Music Media RHCD006 **** Nick Dalton Maverick Country/Country Rock Magazine Feb 2003 “A true original Brit band who manage to combine elements of country and blues into their own individual sound. The influences are all there but the result sounds like nothing other than their own. Oft likened to the Band, or Creedence there?s now a bigger dollop of New Orleans in the mix as the band enter yet another incarnation.

This is their sixth album now. As anyone who?s ever seen them live knows, there?s a band nucleus revolving around guitarist/singer/songwriter Gary Boner, but an ever-changing, evolving group. Here he and original rhythm section Bill Hobley and Roger Hunt are joined by new young lead/slide guitarist Jules Fothergill whose playing may be steeped in the blues but studiously avoids blues cliches, instead adding a sharp rock edge to the jangle of Boner’s playing.

Singer Anne Campbell is joined by Billi Shaw, the pair taking on lead vocals as well as providing rich backing harmonies. And top session player Andy Thompson, who?s played on stage with the likes of Dire Straits, adds rich, smokey sax.

The album’s at its most country on the tuneful opener Desert Sky and the hypnotic When Mountains Fall, but the feel is most definitely bayou country rather than the Nashville variety. Numbers like One Last Roll, with its screaming slide solo, the choppy Voodoo Queen, and the delicate Blues Highway, all add to the Roadhouse sound. Rich, hot and powerful.” 21/11/2004
“Roadhouse – The Rayners, Harrow: 20.11.2002” Darrell Parsons Blues In Britain Nov 2002 “Variety. If you never quite know what’s coming next, not only does it keep you interested throughout a live gig, it can elevate a good night into a better one. It certainly did this evening.

Now, I’ve seen Roadhouse more than once and consequently know some of their songs, but it’s all about delivery and tonight they really rocked the punters’ socks off, compared to a slightly country blues feel of previous gigs. This time around, they upped the pace of their set, whilst maintaining the light and shade that’s one of their trademarks.

“”Blues Highway””, the title track of their latest cd, kicked off in a moody vein before opening out with some marvellous guitar playing, particularly from Jules Fothergill and terrific harmonies from Anne Campbell, all complimenting Gary Boner’s growling vocals. Vibrant blues-rock that would grace a stadium, let alone the back room of a pub near Harrow, followed in the form of “”Telling Lies””, which got the feet moving early doors, particularly notable for the clean drumming of Roger Hunt at the back.

Their own spin on the Sonny Boy Williamson / Ralph Bass classic “”Help Me”” featured Anne moving up to lead vocals that varied from husky to soulful and back as the song progressed, before another track from the new cd, “”Voodoo Queen”” conjured up a trip to New Orleans, courtesy of Gary’s funky guitar.

The rhythm section then excelled, with a thunderous Bo Diddley beat leading into a version of “”Not Fade Away”” that drew rapturous applause from the audience and left them quite breathless, especially from the guitar duelling par excellence between Gary and Jules. The pace dropped, but only slightly, to cruising mode for “”Backstreets””, during which the Gary’s lead vocals and Anne’s harmonies left the lyrics stuck firmly in the memory.

The closing number, “”Whiskey Man”” included an intro from Bill Hobley, whose bass playing had been a feature throughout, as a perfect foil for the upfront lead guitar and vocals that draw the eye, together with a chorus that was pure sweet blues.

And all this was from the band as a five-piece. Their Roadhouse Club gigs and regular jam sessions can include almost twice that number on occasions, so cut along to one if they appear near you.” 21/11/2004
“Roadhouse – The Running Horse, Nottingham: 3.9.2004” Dave Kingsbury The Running Horse Website 09/04 “After 3 consecutive nights of big crowd-drawing acts, perhaps it wasn’t too surprising that a band new to the Runner would play to a scattering of people. But what we lacked in numbers we made up for in our enthusiastic response to one of the most hard-driving, compelling performances of an already memorable year. Roadhouse have a knack of producing the sort of catchy material you’d like blaring out of your car stereo when cruising down the open highway – and I ain’t talking M25 here! It’s no surprise that they’ve had American airplay for the likes of “”Tellin’ Lies””, with its hypnotic riff and explosive dramatic tension. Jules Fothergill really went for every solo, producing gorgeous flights of notes in the creative manner of Jerry Garcia at his bluesiest, ably complemented by Gary Boner’s impressive guitar work. Vocals are shared by Gary and two fabulous backing singers, Lorna Reilly and Anne Campbell, whose passionate contributions brought a rich multi-layered quality in the manner of Jefferson Airpane but much more soulful. Bassist Bill Hobley and drummer Roger Hunt provide the perfect rolling rhythms. This UK band has the collective dynamic of a good US outfit, providing bags of space for individual expression. Anthemic numbers like “”Voodoo Queen””, “”Preacher Man”” and “”Backstreets”” would go down a storm with a big Friday or Saturday night crowd … maybe next time …? ” 25/10/2004
“Roadhouse – Blues On The Boat, Peterborough: 3.11.2003” Alan Harvey Blues Matters! 11/03 “This was my first visit to Charters Bar, home of Blues on the Boat. It won’t be my last though – it must be heaven for anyone who loves good music and real ales. To top that there’s a Thai restaurant upstairs and everything comes with friendly banter from the staff. In honesty the food and drink were a bonus. My motive for being there was Roadhouse (well, coupled with my football team, Brighton, playing in Peterborough that afternoon!). I am a relatively new convert to the band, but have to admit to being totally hooked. They veer towards the rocky side of the Blues, but are clearly Blues based and play in a punchy style with musicianship of the highest quality.

The vocals are led by Gary Boner gruff tones, complemented by the twin talents of Anne Campbell and Lorna Reilly. These lovely ladies could each hold down lead vocalist duties and occasionally do so, with great panache. Their supporting harmonies give Roadhouse it’s unique style, however.

Gary is a fine guitarist, but in addition Jules Fothergill displays amazing talent whether on lead or rhythm guitar. His playing is so fluid and seemingly natural – a star in the making surely? The band are brilliantly supported by Roger Hunt on drums and Bill Hobley on bass. As always the rhythm section go largely un-noticed, but provide a solid platform for the artistry of the front line.

Here we were treated to a generous mix of covers of songs by many Blues legends and all were well received. Highlights were Help Me, Rock Me Baby, Roadhouse Blues and Black Magic Woman. The latter had Jules Fothergill in Santana mode and his respect for the great man was further exemplified when he took vocal duties for a wonderful version of Oye Como Va later in the evening. The set also included a selection of Roadhouse “”greatest hits”” such as Backstreets, Tellin Lies and Voodoo Queen. The title track of their last CD Blues Highway (a classic to my humble ears) kicked the evening off and we were also given a taste of the next CD (on BM!) No Place To Hide. As well as the title track we heard Slip Away, I Couldn’t Get To Sleep and Brooklyn Blues. All excellent. If this selection is typical the CD should be a major release for the band. The night finished with Preacher Man, subtly blended with a little Free Bird, and the audience departed reluctantly, but happy. In the unlikely event of my ever going to heaven I would like to think that this gig will be repeated every night – it was that good!!” 25/10/2004

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