Saturday, June 9, 2018


Considering his explosive, dynamic performances, it's surprise that Hill hasn't released a live album before in his two-decade career. One of the most heralded Canadian blues players, including a Juno in 2015 for Best Blues Album, his one-man-band live shows have the energy and sound that any quartet would kill for. Here it's all on display, from his electric mastery to haunting acoustic numbers, there's never a moment when you ask, 'Gee, what would he sound like with a band?' It's simply not necessary.

These are almost all originals, just a couple of covers, including the set-closer Voodoo Child. Using no boards, loops and such, Hill covers bass, percussion, and rhythm needs, and adds harmonica to use acoustic tunes, all when called for. Most of the time, he simply roars. Hill likes to blast away, and these are tunes that showcase his ability to crank it up a notch with his playing. You can hear the crowd getting more carried away as he builds up those numbers as well, knowing they are in the presence of one of the best. His vocals are passionate as well, so even a mid-tempo ballad like Emily has strength and guts, without any guitar solos to lead the cheers. There's good variety throughout, with Nothing New something dark, dirty and dangerous, evoking Howlin' Wolf. Band? He don't need no stinking band.

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