on 18 September 2000
Seeing these guys live is the real deal, but until they come to your town, this CD is a compulsory purchase for anyone who likes Robert Johnson, ZZ Top, or any form of real primitive-modernist Dixiefried boogie. The brothers Dickinson have been playing together since they were mere children, always guided by their legendary pappy Jim (Big Star producer, among many other distinctions) and their sheer ability to groove within a strict, one-chord-boogie structure is purely amazing. Mainly hard-driving r'n'b, but the slower ones like 'K.C. Jones' and 'Sitting on Top of the World' also score, reminding me of their Dad's superb 'Dixie Fried' album with their sinuous rhythms and jugband harmonies. Reference points; R.L. Burnside, early Thin Lizzy, Creedence, Little Feat. Finally, if you have any soul whatsoever, you'll dance your ass off to this!
on 14 September 2000
The album kicks off with a sample-laden rocking blues track, giving the band a distinctly modern sound. It continues with reworkings of old classics, the three piece sounding crisp,clear, and like they're loving it. An occasional over-indulgence in their music ability sometimes results in rather tedious guitar and drum solos - long live spinal tap. Sounding like a cross between the cheese boogie of Golden Earring and the greatest party blues band ever the album meanders to a climax that leaves you wanting more. The best moments are found in slower songs like 'Sittin On Top...' that mellows nicely out to harmonised vocals and the gentle twanging, of what sounds like an orchestra, of steel guitars. An album that offers a new take on an old sound, and guarentees to leave you smiling.
on 6 December 2000
Having bought so many albums by modern blues bands who have been content to 12 bar me death, what a revelation to hear a band taking their cue from the rural blues vibe of Rl Burnside and Mississippi Fred Mcdowell. More often than not white bluesboys set their amps to eleven and get progressively louder and more histrionic by the solo, but the NMA's have a lucid and light feel, and their trance like boogies draw you in from the off. Highlights - Po Black Maddie - a hypnotic guitar riff to die for and the closing wig out of All Night Long which made me pine for a day when all bands sound like this. Blues album of the year of course.
on 7 January 2003
North Mississippi All Stars' debut is collection of classic country-blues covers. coming from various musical backgrounds (one member was part of a hardcore punk band whilst another was part of a gospel band) they have an exceptionally diverse sound without sounding like a complete mess. their blues influences are clear, and their style is definately that of the Deep South. but when you hear them, you really cannot complain. toe-tappingly catchy and a very confident start to what'll no doubt be a successful career. definately worth getting.