Customer Review

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rhythmic gymnastics and masterclasses in blues playing., 19 Sep 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Couldn't Stand The Weather (Audio CD)
Its sometimes said that great guitar players don't always make great singers, and there are plenty of examples around to add truth to that statement. SRV is undeniably a great guitar player, and though his singing might not quite reach that description, does it really matter when everything important he has to say comes from the clarity and passion of his playing?
This CD contains some tunes that could be described as masterclasses in the art of blues guitar. Apart from the modern classic "Scuttle Buttin'" ( which by now must have taken over from Smoke on the Water as the most heard riff in guitar shops) there are four stand-out pieces which are all different in their own way.
"The things (that) I used to do" would not be out of place in any country road house or late night urban blues bar. Its a standard vocal line and guitar reply format but the treatment is straightforward, solid and brilliant. Hendrix's "Voodoo Chile" is a great vehicle for SRV's Stratocaster mastery, but what makes the track really drive is the tightness of Chris Layton's drumming. Most bands who are happy to start together and finish at more or less the same time could learn from this,it gives a new meaning to the term rhythmic gymnastics.
"Cold Shot" is simply an easy groove blues. Uncomplicated and very effective.
The guitar settings are in the "delicate " mode and the phrasing is lyrical in "Tin Pan Alley" and all are underpinned by an object lesson in blues bass playing. Ths sustained coolness of Tommy Shannon's playing is a pleasure to listen to.There's a feeling though, that the lyrics don't quite match up to the quality of the musicianship ( aopologies to J.Reed fans). With a stronger narrative this could have been an all time great.
All other tracks are highly enjoyable but a bit mixed ( "Stang's Swang" is interesting but somehow ingongrous here ). All SRV fans will have this material, but with the bonus tracks it is a very good introduction for new followers.
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