Blues Trackers – Smells Like Trouble … (2011)

FrontCover1.jpgThe Blues Trackers started playing music in Larisa (Mount Tyrnavos to be specific)/Greece in 1996 and they are consisted of Panos Badikoudis (guitar/vocals), Tasos Litridis (guitar/vocals), Sakis Smarnakis (bass) and Thodoris Triantafyllou.

By then and until today they have swarmed Greece with lives, and have appeared in various European Festivals along side well respected artists such as Elias Zaekos and Louisiana Red to Dr. Feelgood. With 15 year experience in their hunch, it’s time for the bands debut release with original work – there was a CD with 6 love covers recorded in 2002. In this release, Marios Spiliotopoulos has replaced Sakis Smarankis in bass.

Smells Like Trouble is a blues record for the most part, but with touches of classic rock, folk and some bands that made a killing back in the famous “summer of love”. Three things that will catch your attention in this record are the delicate and meticulous production (made by the band members themselves), the dexterity and flawless performance by the members of the band, and last but not least, their general overview of the blues sound in circa 2011. The collaboration between Andy Moor and Giannis Kyriakidis show a different route for today’s blues.


The albums starts out with the album’s name track (in a “I Put A Spell On You” style), with a piano fueled intro which travels you to the dingy infamous and outlaw bars of New Orleans, like the ones you see in the movies. Right next is the Desperate Man, where the Dire Straits style and the desperate soul of a heart broken man meets the solos and liveliness of the earlier blues. If it only was written 40 years ago… Next up is Dream. Imagine H.P.Lovecraft merged with West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band to write a blues song. I think that’s how they would have done it. In “Mind Starvation” is easy to spot how many things they Blue Wires have passed to their descendants. Nice song and very groovy, with blues and funky elements. The fifth track of the album is the dreamy “The Dolphin Dance Part 2”, and if you happen to be a psychedelic fan from the circa 1967-1970, you will surely enjoy this one. It feels like digging out a hidden treasure from that era. Perfect for these summer car drives in empty streets.


Looking For Myself is an homage paid to Bob Dylan and Neil Young (the 70’s one-s). The atmospheric guitars and the harmonica will guide you there. In A Bad Condition, is another pure blues moment from the band. It sounds like whiskey taste. Jenny Star can be safely called the European way of playing the blues. Second to last is the Fake Fairy Tale: a contemporary example to show what guitar pop and folk music was all about in the 60’s. Slow paced. The album abides with The Dolphin Dance Part 1, which sounds like the Part 2, but fused with more dreaminess. This is where the title gets more meaningful: if dolphins can dance, this is how they would probably do it. (by Panagiotis Tzonos)

Okay … this is this fucking good, old and dirty blues-rock … and I guess it´s time to discover The Blues Trackers … worldwide !!!


Panos Badikouthis (vocals, guitar, piano)
Tasos Lytridis (vocals, guitar)
Sakis Smarnakis (bass)
Thodoris Triadafillou (vocals, drums, keyboards)


01. Smells Like Trouble (Badikouthis) 5.30
02. Desperate Man (Badikouthis) 4.14
03. Dream (Lytridis/Triadafillou) 4.19
04. Mind Starvation (Badikouthis) 4.05
05. The Dolphin Dance (Part 2) (Lytridis) 4.04
06. Looking For Myself Badikouthis) 4.27
07. In A Bad Condition Badikouthis) 4.21
08. Jenny Star Badikouthis) 3.37
09. Fake Fairy Tale (Lytridi/Beck) 4.35
10. The Dolphin Dance (Part 1) (Lytridis) 1.56