Monday, June 13, 2011


Throw on an electric guitar blues album, especially from the States, and you're liable to hear what sounds like almost every other electric guitar blues album.  I don't know if it's such a limited form, or whether there's just too few innovators in the modern era.  But as the joke goes, how many blues guitar players does it take to do a Stevie Ray Vaughn tribute?  All of them, apparently.

So when I hear somebody pushing, changing, working, and quite simply sounding great and different, it stands out.  David Gogo always stands out.  His albums don't sound like others, and he knows how to rock.  This album just jumps at you, with plenty of great guitar.  Best of all, those stupid cliche songs that fill so many albums, where the singer goes on about his right to have the blues, and being a real man, with those smug, knowing vocals, there's none of that.  Instead, Gogo proves himself to be an excellent curator, choosing great and almost forgotten tracks from such surprising sources as Procol Harum, The Doors and Wilson Pickett.  Oh, and did I mention the Michael Jackson cover?

That's what makes Gogo so enjoyable.  He takes Jackson's The Way You Make Me Feel, leans into the groove and makes it his own.  It's simply a good song, hands down, and Gogo recognizes that and realizes it's ripe for a cover.  You give it a tougher vocal, slow it down a little, blues it up with organ and B.B.-inspired guitar licks, and everybody is smiling.  And the Procol Harum number is perfect for bringing back the harder blues-rock of the early 70's, when guitar giants such as Robin Trower roamed the earth.  Gogo is full of life, volume, and ideas, and makes his blues vital.

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