Living Blues - p.49
"In addition to assertive guitar and forceful songwriting, Castro supplies husky and gritty lead vocals."
Personnel: Tommy Castro (vocals, guitar); Coco Montoya (vocals, guitar); Angela Strehli (vocals); Keith Crossan (tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Tom Poole (trumpet, flugelhorn); Tony Stead (piano, Wurlitzer organ); Teresa James (piano, background vocals); Chris Sandoval (drums); Lenny Castro (percussion); Bonnie Hayes (background vocals).
Audio Mixer: John Porter.
Recording information: Laughing Tiger, San Rafael, CA.
Photographer: Eddie Lee Ebony.
Tommy Castro has long been a disciple of both Stax/Volt-era R&B and the electric blues of the Texas and Chicago schools, and on PAINKILLER he synthesizes those influences perfectly. Whether on the Wilson Pickett-esque "I'm Not Broken," the classic rock boogie of "I Roll When I Rock," or straight-ahead blues such as the cover of Albert Collins's "A Good Fool is Hard to Find" (which features guest Coco Montoya), PAINKILLER is full of hard-driving, horn-sweetened, electric guitar-fueled barnburners. Castro's stinging leads are featured throughout, but what most impresses is the overall musical punch packed throughout this blast of blues and soul.