Monday, February 25, 2013

Album Review: "Live At The Regal" by B.B. King

Live At The Regal
Many times in my life someone has said how much they love the blues or something like that. Honestly, even just hearing "the blues" has always sounded a bit strange to my ears.

Most of my heroes talk about old bluesmen. As stated, many of my friends and family love the blues. My guitar teacher talks about 12 bar blues all the time. (Now I do too.) So now, it's time to really begin looking into this music.

So, after looking into, mostly modern blues and quite a bit of later stuff in the past few weeks, let's turn to an elder statesman of the blues, B.B. King, and see if he has anything to offer. (Tongue planted firmly in cheek)

This album is an exercise in the 12 bar blues. From the first to the last track, B.B. sings his tales of woe and shows how he has made quite a career basing his songs off of just three chords in a very simple progression.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Album Review: "Hot Cakes" by The Darkness

Here is the first album by the newly reformed The Darkness in about 7 years. Apparently, they had broken up for about five years and decided to give this another go. Based on this particular record, I think we should all be quite glad that they did!

Recently, while reading the music section of My Les someone posted about the greatest Les Paul tone in the world, and it was this band. Well, the curiosity's piqued and well, does this band really have a great Les Paul tone?

In a word, yes. The guitars are this album not only sound spectacular, but they were recorded expertly. In fact the production quality on this record is just top notch. It's always a wonderful thing when an album  has been recorded well because the listener only focuses on the music.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Album Review: "Moonwater" by Chappo

Here is an album that was purchased by me because someone said it was good and a worthy pick up. Ifound out later that my friend had seen them play live and that he felt that they "had potential."

Uh oh.

This recommendation was from the same person who suggested Rory Gallagher's Irish Tour 74, so it came from a trusted source. This person seems to have a similar taste in music to me and has even suggested an awesome little headphone amp so I can rock out on my Les Paul after the wife and daughter go to sleep.

A couple samples of this record were listened to before the purchase. As soon as the songs were heard by this blogger, they were put onto the Amazon wish list.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Album Review: "First Rays of the New Rising Sun" by Jimi Hendrix

Let's take another foray into the world of Jimi Hendrix. (There will be two others on the horizon as well, including the new release in March.)

It has been said thousands of millions of times that Jimi was the greatest, and that has not changed a single bit. There are many kinds of artists that play music, but it is felt by this blogger that Jimi was far more than just a musician. He was a poet, but he was not just any poet with a pen.

Part of the poetry that Jimi recited night in and night out took place through his hands and because of the kind of artist Jimi was, it is very important that when outside hands, even Janie Hendrix's, are touching his works that the utmost care be taken. It would be like making some changes to Shakespeare's plays now. Of course they do that, but that's neither here nor there... Right?

Monday, February 11, 2013

Album Review: "Til The Casket Drops" by ZZ Ward

This album arrived to the Amazon recommendations list and it looked like something that might be enjoyable. With my personal swerve towards blues and blues rock, this seemed like it would be a good purchase.

This is the full length debut of ZZ Ward. She has been working steadily in the underworld of music seeking a break. The 26 year old Ward started playing in bands at the age of 12.

This is a very talented woman in many ways. Her lyrics are phenomenal and she plays the guitar, harmonica, piano, and more. She is certainly the kind of musician that my wife would just absolutely love, which is why I suppose that I do not.

This album, while bluesy, is far too dependent on pop music dynamics for me to really appreciate it as an album.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Album Review: "CVI" by Royal Thunder

Recently Guitar World did an article on the Atlanta band, Royal Thunder. For some reason this particular article really spoke to me. This was an album that had to be in my library, but for weeks this album languished on an Amazon wishlist.

It was finally purchased and it has arrived. So far, it has received about four or five spins in the car. There were no previews of songs played before this album was purchased. Rarely is this the case. The idea of not knowing is very concerning to me, but as nowadays, music is coming to my house on a much more regular basis, it could be supposed that a stinker here and there might not be such a bad thing.

This band is compared favorably to bands like Baroness and this is a very fair comparison. Both bands are some times heavy, sometimes long winded, and very focused on the groove.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Album Review: "The Firm"

Continuing on with Jimmy Page Throughout the Years, we arrive to The Firm. Until the pending release of "Celebration Day," when this ridiculous idea came to me, this band was completely unknown to me. Upon perusing Amazon, this album by The Firm popped up. Completely stymied as to whom they were. Never did KSHE play any tracks off of this, or their other album, nor did KHTR, KSD, or The Rock. (Remember, this author is a lifelong St. Louisan.)

This, for lack of a better term, Super Group was made up of some pretty heavy hitters: Paul Rodgers on guitar and vocals, Jimmy Page on guitar, Chris Slade of Uriah Heap on the drums, and Tony Franklin (who worked with many different artists) on bass. Both Rodgers and Page had stated they would play no material off of their previous albums in this project, though the final track on this album "Midnight Moonlight" was based on the Led Zeppelin song "Swan Song."