i just wanted to say that, as a long-time fan of Joe's work, i've just been listening to his back catalogue again, in the light of his most recent release, Black Rock. And you know, i still think Blues Deluxe is his best album. I know Joe himself dislikes his earlier 'shouty' singing, and has taken great pains to work on a smoother, more tutored voice, but i rather like the rawness here, and the energy and exuberance of this album. For me it represents the apex of when his experience had started to really show, but everything still sounded really fresh and full of 'rising star' joy. Now Joe has hit the big time, everything is much more polished and glossy, but i think maybe some of that young vitality has been rubbed away and, dare i say, a certain sameness is creeping in. Blues Deluxe is a really mixed, hooky affair by comparison, lots of funky rhythms (which seem to have been ditched in favour of more straight-ahead rock rhythms these days) and up-front, twisty licks to die for, especially on the title track. It might be less polished, but maybe its got a bit more mojo? If i could only keep one of Joe's albums, this would still be the one.