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You Gotta Get Behind The Mule
on 4 January 2010
Comfortably the Mule's best studio album, "By A Thread" touches all their familiar bases and then some. It's a work of remarkable variety and maturity which never loses sight of the band's southern rock roots.
Proceedings start with a bang, the rocking 'Broke Down On The Brazos' given one mighty turbo charge by ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons - his most blistering guitar work in recent memory. 'Any Open Window' also keeps the pedal to the metal whilst other highlights include the grimy sleazy blues of 'Inside Outside Woman Blues #3', 'Railroad Boy' - a Warren Haynes arrangement of a traditional English murder ballad and the jazz-rock / psychedelic 'Scenes From A Troubled Mind'. There's even room for a gentle ballad 'Forevermore' providing colour and texture to a strong and well-balanced set that shows a band unafraid of stepping outside its comfort zone.
Clearly, this particular mule can still pack quite a kick.