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Articles Home » 1990 Articles » Justin Sayne - 1990 Big Tools
Justin Sayne - 1990 Big Tools

ARTIST: Justin Sayne
ALBUM: Big Tools
LABEL: Bay City
YEAR: 1990


LINEUP: Darren Robinette - lead vocals * Wayne Coyle - vocals, guitars, mandolin, violin * Rico Weisman - bass, guitars * Russ Pfeifer - keyboards, vocals * Jeff Job - drums, percussion

Roger Witt - additional guitars

TRACK LISTING: 01 New One * 02 Here And Now * 03 Run In The Night * 04 Nobody (Loves You Like I Do) * 05 Money * 06 Burning Embers * 07 Keeper Of The Key * 08 Balanced On The Edge * 09 Flames Beat The Blues * 10 Can't Take It Away * 11 What If It Were You * 12 Touchin' The Fire * 13 I Know Why


It's not very often we get to write about a band who come from Idaho and play melodic hard rock. But from Boise Idaho do Justin Sayne originate from, and a great little album they released back in 1990 called 'Big Tools'. This band have a keyboard laced sound and equate well to bands such as Aurora, Litterer, Spiced Ice and their ilk. The band were in existence between 1985 and 1991, and played mainly throughout the north-western region of the USA, and racked up between 250 and 300 performances per year during their heyday.

The Songs
The 'Big Tools' album features a load of songs. Thirteen in total, all original numbers put together by the band. The opening track 'New One' was a familiar track to me, having been heard on Bruce's old L.A Nites website a few years ago. I didn't really like that track due to the offputting vocals, but thankfully the songs improved markedly as we move through the album. They strike as early as track #2, 'Here And Now' is brilliant stuff, pumping bass lines and subtle piano and keyboard lines backing up the band nicely. 'Keeper Of The Key' is another cool rocker, again it pumps along with some change up moments too. 'Balanced On The Edge' is a lovely flowing acoustic piece with some well timed violin and mandolin parts thanks to Wayne Coyle. Justin Sayne up the ante for the fast paced 'Can't Take It Away', it has a slight southern/boogie tinge and makes for a fun listen, especially with that those toe-tapping piano parts. 'Touchin' The Fire' takes that southern/boogie tinge a wee bit further, and is extended by a terrific synth solo.

In Summary
Overall, there are some good moments here, and you'll hear a variety of styles across the thirteen tracks. One could say that the tracks here read like a Greatest Hits for Justin Sayne, even if they didn't have a hit! Despite breaking up years ago, the members are all still in touch, and have even bought the band back to life in 2009 - refer their website. There may yet be some future action from Justin Sayne beyond local gigs, stay tuned.

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