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Crucial Guitar Blues (2003)

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Crucial Guitar Blues (2003)

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01. All The King's Horses - Luther Allison
02. Heartless - Michael Burks
03. Same Old Thing - Coco Montoya
04. Lights Are On But Nobody's Home - Albert Collins
05. Percolatin' - Little Charlie & The Nightcats
06. To the Devil For A Dime - Tinsley Ellis
07. Country Boogie - Roy Buchanan
08. I Can't Hear Nothing But The Blues - Son Seals
09. Phone Line - Dave Hole								play
10. Double Whammy - Lonnie Mack-Stevie Ray Vaughan		play
11. I Smell Trouble - Johnny Winter
12. Pressure Cooker - Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown


One of three simultaneously released, budget-priced Alligator blues compilations (the other two are Crucial Chicago Blues and Crucial Harmonica Blues), Crucial Guitar Blues is a 12-track, hour-long anthology of some of the hottest guitarists in the label's extensive catalog. Although the word "electric" is not featured in the title, this is definitely a plugged-in affair. Kicking off with Luther Allison's intense "All the King's Horses," the track list of Albert Collins ("Lights Are on but Nobody's Home"), Johnny Winter ("I Smell Trouble"), Roy Buchanan ("Country Boogie"), and Son Seals ("I Can't Hear Nothing but the Blues") is a roller-coaster ride through Alligator's marquee names. Lonnie Mack with Stevie Ray Vaughan charging through a breathless, self-explanatory "Double Whammy" adds even more firepower, and even the pace-changing, jaunty swing of Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown's instrumental "Pressure Cooker" that closes the disc maintains the fast-fret theme that is the album's calling card. Little Charlie & the Nightcats add some West Coast groove with their instrumental "Percolatin'," but generally tougher blues like Tinsley Ellis' "The Devil for a Dime" dominate. Oddly, there are no tracks from Alligator's two most celebrated guitar albums, Lone Star Shootout and the Grammy-winning Showdown with Albert Collins, Robert Cray, and Johnny Copeland slinging it out. Unfortunately, liner notes are MIA, as are detailed personnel listings for each track. Blurbs describing the albums the songs are picked from are more advertisements than informative, but that doesn't diminish the non-stop power and excitement of this excellent set. ---Hal Horowitz, AMG

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Last Updated (Wednesday, 06 March 2013 17:40)


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