Over the years, Mike Zito and Albert Castiglia have both established themselves in the world of blues rock. Each artist has a long list of accomplishments over their solo careers. Now the longtime friends have joined forces for their new album, Blood Brothers. Not only have Zito and Castiglia teamed up, they’ve also enlisted the services of Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith to produce the album forming a blues rock all-star team.
Blood Brothers opens with the fun rocking “Hey Sweet Mama,” which has a retro feel to it and was penned by Zito. “In My Soul,” another Zito penned track follows and is one of the album’s standout tracks. “In My Soul” strips things back a bit with acoustic guitars in the intro as Zito handles lead vocals. Then the electric guitars kick in a bit later. Jade Macrae and Dannielle DeAndrea provide beautiful backing vocals in the chorus.
“Tooth and Nail” was written by Tinsley Ellis and would fit right in on a Tinsley album. Albert Castiglia’s vocals are even a bit reminiscent of Ellis on the track. A solid blues rocker. When listening to “A Fool Never Learns,” you definitely get the sense of Bonamassa and Smith’s influence. The horn section here is slick and a nice touch. This is the type of track that would fit well on some of Bonamassa’s recent albums. Joe performs on the Castiglia penned “A Thousand Heartaches,” which was released as a single and once again really gets elevated with the backing vocals from Macrae and DeAndrea.
“My Business” was written by John Hiatt and has a swampy blues feel with Zito and Castiglia sharing vocals and Zito on slide guitar. “You’re Gonna Burn” is a powerful slow blues with Castiglia on vocals. “Bag Me Tag Me” brings back the retro feel of “Hey Sweet Mama” with Castiglia singing. Zito takes back the reigns on vocals with the blues track, “No Good Woman.”
“Hill Country Blues” is the instrumental track on the album clocking in just under seven written by Zito and Josh Smith with both playing lead. “One Step Ahead of the Blues” closes things out with Zito and Casilgia trading vocals.
Blood Brothers was listed an one of Blues Rock Review’s most anticipated albums of 2023 and lives up to that promise. The friendship between Zito and Castiglia shows as the chemistry between the two is dynamic. From start to finish, Blood Brothers might just be their best work to date.
The Review: 9.5/10
Can’t Miss Tracks
– Hey Sweet Mama
– In My Soul
– A Fool Never Learns
– A Thousand Heartaches
– You’re Gonna Burn
The Big Hit
– In My Soul
Buy the album: Amazon