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The Butanes / Press

“The quality of the program is so uniformly high that it’s a losing game to pick out highlights... [T]his recording, ...will surely rank among the year’s best blues or old-school soul releases.”

Jim DeKoster - Living Blues

“No other band near the northern reaches of the Mississippi has a similarly encyclopedic knowledge of blues, classic R&B, and soul, nor the versatility to play virtually anything in that realm. The Butanes do it so convincingly that even natives of Memphis, New Orleans, or other hardcore bastions of essential roots sounds are incredulous that these guys hail from the land of the wind-chill factor. In fact, the Butanes have played with an incredible array of blues and R&B legends, from John Lee Hooker to Earl King to Bo Diddley, who have universally sung the band's praises. ”

Best of the Twin Cities • 2008 • City Pages

“Obeda's rippling guitar and gnarly vocals lead the way, while the intrepid duo of bassist John Lindberg and drummer Robb Stupka provide a slithery, swampy groove. Add Virgil Nelson's keyboards and a visiting horn or three and you've got a gritty blues feast doused in the flavors of Chicago, Memphis, and points south. ”

Best of the Twin Cities • 2007 • City Pages

“To bring these compositions to life, Obeda found the ideal interpreter in the person of Willie Walker. His voice has that warmth, this density that makes it appear to contact each of us in particular. One thinks of Bobby Bland, James Carr, the greatest stylists of Southern soul. Willie Walker clearly belongs in this category. LE PIED! (roughly translated: 5 of 5 stars, outstanding...OUT OF SIGHT!) ”

JACQUES PÉRIN - Soul Bag magazine (FR)

“The Butanes - Long Time Thing They backed up Earl King after the Radiators ceded the job, and now rule the R & B/blues scene in the upper midwest. This release with Willie Walker on vocals is consistent, high-energy, and true to the soul.”

Missy Bowen - ‘OZ Show Hosts Pick Best CDs of 2011

“Highly recommended to every true blues and soul fan.”

“The Butanes, led by guitarist Curtis Obeda, has truly struck gold with his latest release Right Where I Belong. Former Goldwax and Checker recording artist Willie Walker has joined forces with the Butanes, with fantastic results. Obeda and Walker have crafted an album of smoldering, Memphis style soul that could comfortably stand alongside the classic works of artists such as Syl Johnson and O.V. Wright. The 14 songs on the CD, all Obeda originals, provide a perfect showcase for Walker's laid-back vocals, smoky and sweet as Memphis barbecue. Behind him, the band produces a dead-on authentic sound, dripping with Hammond organ, pleading horn arrangements and Obeda's impeccable fretwork. Ordinarily, when a record comes out that tries so diligently to recreate a certain sound from the past; I would recommend going back to the original material it is referencing. In this case however, I would say that Obeda/Walker have significantly added to the genre they so obviously love.”

Blake Thompson - Offbeat magazine

“The year's best deep-soul album...Howard Tate, your comeback ass has just been kicked.”

Dylan Hicks - Village Voice (US)

“It's the kind of album the worst nit-picker can't find one thing wrong with. Except that eventually it's over. Curt Obeda wrote everything, coming up with cold-blooded killer material -- sharp lyrics, fresh melodies and chord structures rich in dynamics. Combine this with Willie Walker and The Butanes performance, then talk about chained lightning. Trust me: if you can't feel this music from the top of your head to bottom of the toes, someone should notify your next of kin, 'cause you're already dead and just don't know it.”

Dwight Hobbes - Insight (US)

“This is it! The real deal. The goods. This CD, recorded in Minneapolis, is a truly wonderful listening experience. Yes, there are a few modest nods in the direction of the new millennium, but what you will hear when (not if!) you purchase this minor masterpiece is a perfect fusion of the different strands of 'The Memphis Sound' as honed to perfection by Stax, Goldwax and Hi. Much of the credit for this lies in the truly wonderful support provided by the Butanes, led by a marvellously empathetic and inventive guitarist called Curtis Obeda. Curtis wrote, produced and arranged this entire CD with drum, horn, guitar and organ charts that easily contend with the best I’ve ever heard in (gasp) over forty years of listening to 'real' soul and R&B. You will hardly believe your ears as your own personal laser beam converts those little digital signals into music. Yes, music. Real soul music.”

Steve Armitage - Blues & Rhythm magazine (UK)

“For Walker, it might just be like putting on an old hat, but Butanes guitarist Curt Obeda deserves accolades as well. He penned every song here, and tunes like (We Gotta) Put Out The Fire and Crying To Do are as tastefully understated as his guitar playing, while the arrangements, instrumentation, and recording resonate with a natural warmth. For his part, Walker delivers heartbreak, hope, loneliness, joy, and loss with emotion.This record is so top notch that no purist will be able to tell the difference between it and a long lost reel of Goldwax tape. Amen”

Michael Hurtt - Living Blues (US)

“Soul like it used to be done, one part church, one part barbecue, one part groove-dripping sweat.”

Mike Elias - Electric Fetus Weekly E-Mailer (US)

“‘Memphisapolis’ has to be in the running for my pick of 2006. Yes indeed, I never thought that soul records of this quality were being cut nowadays, I though the magic touch had been lost somewhere back in the 1960s along with Beatle wigs, black and white television and real leather footballs with laces. It contains elements of all the great Memphis studios, and summons up the spirit of Otis Redding, Al Green and all those other giants who recorded in the Bluff City in the heyday of real soul music. A sure fire winner for Messrs Walker and Obeda...”

Phil Wight - Blues & Rhythm (UK)

“It’s another slab of classic gritty Southern soul, the stuff that’s as tough as it is romantic...“What’s It Take?” gets the album off to a great start, and “Real Love” is easily the best Al Green song of the year.”

Tom Surowicz - StarTribune (US)

“A slice of absolutely timeless soul music to gladden the heart...2006 or 1966, this is what soul music is all about for me and I rather suspect you too. - a ‘star pick’”

David Cole - In The Basement magazine (UK)

“In this age of synthesized and formulaic music with false facade talents, it’s always a pleasure to hear strong singing backed by real live musicians, and that’s why this “real thing” CD is worth supporting.”

Heikki Suosalo - Soul Express (FI)

“Just why Willie Walker has not got a huge reputation is one of life’s mysteries, he really is a elegant vocalist capable of delivering the goods on timeless soul classics or punchy blues, ‘Long Time Thing’ comes strongly recommended to soul fans everywhere. I guarantee if this is your intro to his vocalising you will be seeking out his previous releases pronto, and that’s the truth partner.”

Phil Wight - Blues & Rhythm magazine (UK)