If you like proper blues rock, you need this album! Brilliant guitar playing, great versions of classics like "Travellin' South" and "Reconsider Baby" and homages to Danny Gatton ("Revenge of the 10 Gallon Hat") and Led Zeppelin ("The River") are amongst the many highlights here.In fact,the whole album ROCKS!
If you like your Blues/Rock to be more Rock than blues, then this is the one for you. Joe claims he wanted to explore the heavier side of the blues with this CD and he has certainly lived up to this. There are no traditionally played blues songs on here, and better still, few ballads. There is however some of the best heavy electric blues you`re ever likely to hear. Take your pick from Reconsider baby, Never Make Your Move Too Soon, The River ( which appears to be a *cough* homage to When The Levee Breaks, but such a good one you`ll have to forgive him), or the knuckle-busting Travellin` South. For variety there`s the equally knuckle-busting, but almost classical sounding Faux Martini, a country knees-up, Revenge Of The Ten Gallon Hat and a couple of slowies. Look, this is just a great album, buy it.
From the opening salvo of "Never Make Your Move Too Soon", Joe Bonamassa leaves you in no doubt what to expect from this album: race-tuned blues of the sort people used to play when "guitar hero" was a compliment rather than a put-down. Once again he leans heavily on the souped-up Marshall-type sounds of the seventies, but only in a good way. There are some classics in the making here: his re-working of "Reconsider Baby" into a minor key is a triumph, opening it up and creating a Stairway to Heaven vibe; "Revenge of the 10-Gallon Hat" (a tribute to the late Danny Gatton) is a jaw-dropping display of country-style picking at an almost impossible speed; the title track, written by Steve Winwood and originally recorded by Blind Faith, begins with the wonderfully sinuous riff and then builds layers of harmonic crunch until the two wailing solos leave you no alternative but to press the "repeat" button. For my money, the two slower tracks on offer, "Around the Bend" and "When She Dances", are, although listenable, less successful because they incline towards the sentimental, but elsewhere the beat goes on and whether it's his nifty line in slide guitar ("Travellin' South"), his furious acoustic picking ("Faux Mantini") or his screaming blues (everything else) you'll be hooked. Buy the album and spread the word.
I wish I could rave about this album but I feel the need to hang back for a moment. A slightly southern (lots of slide) side of Joe, which takes some getting used to but is very good. Reconsider Baby, Had To Cry Today and The River are the main highlights of this album for me but saying that none of the songs are duds. I am fairly new to Bonamassa and despite this album being 10 years old, it doesn't feel at all dated. Not as good as Sloe Gin or Ballad of John Henry as an entity but still fantastic none the less; highly recommended. I think the only thing that brings this album down to 4/5 not 5/5 is his vocals. You can tell how far he's come after listening to his most recent records. It's as if the guitar work is the focal point of this album, which isn't a bad thing, but it means that the quality of his vocals suffer slightly. Despite that it's still a thoroughly enjoyable project of music and I can't help listening to it at least once a day at the moment.
I bought Joe Bonamassa's DVD of his Royal Albert Hall concert. Very good. However, although some think his singing voice is "very good" I personally rate it as "average". Yes, his guitar playing prowess is exceptional. This is the first CD of his I have bought. Same misgivings really. Some stand out tracks (track 4, Reconsider Baby being one such), some average, mainly due to his vocal style. I have ordered his album set with Beth Hart as vocalist. It may change my opinion.
the master of riff continues to be addictive listening. He makes any budding guitarist want to pick up a guitar and learn how to play his often deceptively simple tunes. (that is without the supreme lead breaks which appear)