Tuesday, March 27, 2012


One of Canada's favourite bluesmen gets soulful on his latest.  From Stax to jump blues tempo, this is uptempo stuff for the large part, with JW and his band in upbeat mode.  Are blues albums supposed to be this much fun?  Screw it, why not?

Jones is flying all over this one, with every song a natural for soloing.  Lead cut Ain't Gonna Beg sees him in crisp and clean Steve Cropper territory, with slashing rhythm chords and driving Hammond organ from Jesse Whitely.  It's a take-no-prisoners cut, two verses, and then wow!  What a lead break.  This could have been an Eddie Floyd single in 1967.  Let It Go, one of the eight out of ten Jones' originals here, stomps along with a good-time beat, and a great big riff, kinda what T. Rex might've sounded like if Bolan had gone with the blues instead of boogie.  In A Song is another potential Stax hit, if we wind the way-back machine to the '60's and 70's, maybe when Albert King signed with the label.  Again, like almost all the songs here, JW hits a major, eyebrow-raising solo. 

Vocally, Jones is also getting into the soul crooner mode, and doing it well.  He doesn't have the deep growl or pure tone of others, but he's certainly capturing the energy, and commitment.  With a live-in-the-studio sound, and just the core four-piece grooving away, there's a great energy all the way through.  You can single out every player on every song for excellence, and this one's a winner for sure.

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