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Son Powers - Paranoid Blues (2012)
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Son Powers - Paranoid Blues (2012)

15-02-2014, 18:11
Music | Blues

Son Powers - Paranoid Blues (2012)

Artist: Son Powers
Title Of Album: Paranoid Blues
Year Of Release: 2012
Label: Son Powers
Genre: Modern Electric Blues, Piano Blues
Format: MP3
Quality: 320 kbps, 44.1 Khz
Total Time: 38:19
Total Size: 90 Mb
Covers: Front

01. Chicago (4:22)
02. If I Ever Tell The Truth (4:02)
03. Love You The Most (3:04)
04. Help Me Doctor (3:22)
05. Constance (2:18)
06. Time To Walk (2:52)
07. Boss Of The Blues (4:29)
08. Should Have Thought It Over (3:39)
09. Blue Hour (6:55)
10. Paranoid Blues (3:12)

Son Powers keeps topping himself. PARANOID BLUES opens up with a tune called “Chicago,” a tribute to blues masters like Little Walter, Willie, Wolf and Muddy. Jerry Lee Lewis lives in the personage of Walter Mingledorff, who dominates the proceedings throughout. The use of spaces with only the bass and drums keeps many of these songs feeling fresh.

“If I Ever Tell The Truth” with its answers “they’ll drag me off in chains” and “I’ll be the only one” is next, with its cool organ and unaffected vocals mixed right up front and very “dry” (not much reverb).

Powers slows it down on the third tune, with “Love You The Most.” Sparse piano chords block out the song, and the arrangement is quite effective on the bridge.

On “Help Me Doctor” (a standard Blues-ism) Son begs the medical professional to “help me clear my head.” The song’s initial ragtime mood changes to a shuffle and then back again for the finish.

“Constance” is a gorgeous and unpretentious little ballad played on only piano with a synthesizer in the background.

The next tune “Time To Walk” boasts the excellent lyrics “moonshine made me crazy, cocaine makes me talk” and is framed by Ty Hanson’s harmonica.

“Should Have Thought It Over” has an easy going groove and benefits from a musical motif where a chord is played a half-step below and resolved on the tonic. It’s very effective when it breaks out of that pattern for the bridge, and uses sparseness in the arrangement to great effect. Heavy reverb on Hanson’s harmonica supplies mood.

There’s an almost Jazzy feel to “Blue Hour,” and Rob Piazza’s steady rimshot allows the funky bass to frame the song.

The Title tune, “Paranoid Blues” is easily the most innovative tune on the album. I can see why Mr. Powers made it the title song. With it’s exhortation to “try walking in my shoes” and the complaint that it “makes me suspect most everyone I meet,” as well as its bagpipe-like drone, it’s something new in the blues music pantheon.

Overall, sparseness is used to great effect on “PARANOID BLUES.” There is never a fear to leave a space, and the songs flow better than ever before. The unaffected vocals are a real treat. Powers never sounds like he’s trying to sound self-consciously “Blues-y.” Recorded and mixed very well by Chuck Nash at Zoe Tribe Studios, and with hilarious and well designed cover art by Harmony Cornett, Son Powers should be quite proud of this collection of songs. ~Morley Lowbead, July 2012

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