Saturday, November 10, 2012

November 10th, 2012 - Saints and (Monk)Shiners

Another pairing for you this evening from the Meista my friends... Monkshine Belgian Style Blonde Ale from Salt Lake's Uinta Brewing Company and Whitesnake's 1982 album, "Saints And Sinners."

The thing I love about the Monkshine is that it is a very accessible Belgian styled ale. Often times, Belgians can be really big in alcohol content and sometimes a little too boozy. What's nice about the Monkshine is that it is very drinkable, very refreshing, with a lower ABV percentage comparatively (6.8%).   The Monkshine pours a transparent, apricot amber with a thin, white head.  The nose has notes of pear, banana, and spice.  Characterized by an ester sweetness up front and a very even, spicy bitterness in the back, the Monkshine has a solid and complex flavor without being overpowering.  There are ester notes of pear, apple, white grape juice, and mild banana coupled by a sharpness from the hops and an almost sourdough flavor from the grains.  This is a very drinkable, very poppy Belgian styled blonde that is smooth and flavorful... perfect for a night of rocking out with Coverdale and his gang of merry mischief-makers!

Speaking of flavorful, I've always really, really loved Whitesnake and especially their earlier work like 1982's "Saints And Sinners." As opposed to the later and more popular, more produced and polished Whitesnake albums, the late '70s and early '80s work sounds to me more like a straight-ahead, rocking bar band, but with the heavy, blues-based sensibility of bigger acts like Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple.  "Saints And Sinners" is an untamed, uninhibited, impetuous rocking good time!  Two of the tracks, "Crying in the Rain" and "Here I Go Again", were later re-recorded on the monster 1987 album, "Whitesnake,"  but I prefer the original versions as they are a bit grittier and more emotional.  The album opens with two other favorites of mine, "Young Blood" and "Rough An' Ready," powerhouses in their own rights.  In my opinion, there is no filler here.  Lesser known songs like "Victim Of Love," "Love An' Affection," "Rock An' Roll Angel," and "Dancing Girls" are fist-pumping, head-banging gems.  The album's, finale and title track, "Saints An' Sinners" is pure magic.  "For what we are about to receive, may the Lord make us truly gratefuuuuuul!"  Sure the lyrics can be a bit trite and chauvinistic, but shit man, this is good, old-fashioned rock and roll and it is David Fucking Coverdale afterall!  The band is in fine form and Coverdale's voice is perfection.  Sadly, this album would be the last of the classic line-up of Coverdale, Mick Moody, Bernie Marsden, Jon Lord, Ian Paice, Mel Galley, and Neil Murray, however most quit in mid-production so drummer Cozy Powell and bassist Colin Hodgkinson were brought in to finish "Saints And Sinners."

So grab yourself a Monkshine Belgian Style Blonde Ale from my good friends at Uinta Brewing Company and spin some Whitesnake "Saints And Sinners"for an evening of tasty goodness... on both counts!!  Rock on my brothers and sisters... and cheers to you!!

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