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Sure Plays A Mean Pinball
on 27 September 2012
His fourth new album in under five years. The older John Hiatt gets the faster he seems to churn them out. And yet this is another quality release, in fact probably his most consistent and cohesive album since his eighties heyday.
And this one sounds like a proper band album, rather than just the main man with a backing group in tow. Credit producer Kevin Shirley for that, probably. Rockers "My Business", "We're Alright Now", "You're All The Reason I Need" and "Bite Marks" plus the shuffling blues stomp "One of Them Damn Days" give the record its real teeth - the meaty guitar solos were doubtless Shirley's idea too.
The countryish "Give It Up" and "I Know How To Lose You" sound like they escaped from "Slow Turning" or "Stolen Moments" when no-one was watching, whilst "Wood Chipper" is a kind of "Trudy and Dave" for the 21st century, a dark tale of shady characters and hidden menace.
And there's still room for a couple of Hiatt's tenderest ever songs - "No Wicked Grin" and "Blues Can't Even Find Me".
Impressive and enjoyable.