Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck|
No rating supplied
Kenny Neal gets "One Step Closer" to the blues on his latest Telarc
release. Neal just keeps getting better and better with each album
he releases. The talented Bayou bluesman does it all. He plays the
guitar (lead, rhythm, and slide), harmonica, and sings. I kept asking
myself whom he sounded like throughout this CD. By the time three
quarters of the CD was finished, it finally hit me. He sounds like
Phil Lynot (Thin Lizzy). This may seem like an odd comparison to those
of you whom are familiar with Lynotís work. He was a rock and roll
star. And Kenny couldnít be anything further from that. Familiarity
serves as a comfort zone for most of us when we can see likenesses
of favorite artists in what we are presently listening to. I covered
Kennyís "What You Got" last year and never noticed any likeness to
anyone. I am no doubt listening more closely and intently this time around.
One of the best tracks is "No More One More Chance." It serves as
an example of the irony and paradoxes of life. While the blues contains
humor it also contains a lot of truths about human nature. The song
really focuses on the realities of lifeís situations while it jugs
along with some really fine get-down-to-business right- from-the-heart
blues music. The music and words seem to form an entity that lives,
feels, and breathes through the artisans that are attempting to reach
you with their stories and messages. For me, this is the blues. "Whiskey
Tears", the closer, is a song about the unhappiness that life can
bring, and to those that expect it and arenít happy without it. I
personally know the anguish and pain of alcohol tears, I also know
that it can be a choice to accept or deny that influence in your life.
Neal is a master of song and musical diversity. He learned at a very
young age from his father Raful, who happens to be one of the best
harp players on the face of the earth (See Hoodoo Kings Review). As
every song begins and ends, itís the story that shapes the music.
Neal bounces back and forth from the upbeat tempos to Louisiana style
blues, then to the full acoustic blues complimented with violin and
saxophone. Itís a real party, just like you would see happening on "Fat Tuesday."
This is music that never looses its flow and energy, and it keeps
you captivated by offering every facet of the blues genre in one sitting.
This is quality blues music with an edge. Get the "Remedy" today and
get "One Step Closer To The Blues." Itís inevitable that you will find that groove.
1. No More One More Chance
3. Loves Will
4. Walk Out In The Rain
5. One Step Closer To The Blues
6. Hidden In Plain Sight
7. High On A Hilltop
8. Back Door Tipper
9. Congo Square
10. You Care
11. Whiskey Tears
12. She Ain't Happy Unless She's Sad