Paul was stoked to get a review in the Drum - 'Just imagine', he said,

'A Blues band being reviewed in the Drum'

He got all warm and fuzzy at the thought of it - as he said, 'It proves we exist',

(which put my mind at rest as I was starting to have existentialist doubts).

This brings to mind the Cartesian credo of

'Recenseo, ergo Drum' or 'I am reviewed in Drum, therefore I exist.'.

Read on for the review! Which, by the same logic, will confirm that you too exist...

‘It’s a pity that this debut album by slide guitarist Paul Read and singing harmonica player Michael Barry, with a little help from the guys from Finn, kicks off with the weakest of their songs, because it might stop the casual listener heading deeper into the album. Not that’s there’s anything wrong with Mississippi Meltdown, its just that things get a bit more creative as the record unfolds and Barry’s voice, while it seems a little too clean to deliver the more formulaic gritty blues boogie of the opener (fancy having a blues singer whose throat has not been completely shot by cigarettes and whiskey!) provides just the right cruisey casualness appropriate to tracks like R U Ready For This and the slow burn of I’ve Been Down Before. There’s a lot of Little Charlie & the Nightcats in the hard swing and Elmore Leonardesque spoken/sung Yamanote Line (Hi Stylin’ Women). Read on the other hand has the edginess in his guitar work to recall the best moments of the likes of the late Duane Allman, and the addition of little ‘found sounds’ and voice bites adds a layer of colour and texture on the odd track you don’t normally get on a blues record. In fact, to say this is just a blues album is to diminish the versatility of the songwriters. Rather it’s an album with a blues backbone covering a number of styles informed by a blues sensibility. Shake’em Down Mama, for example, wouldn’t feel out of place on a Bill Chambers or Steve Earle’s album.’.’

Michael Smith

Drum Media

May 6th 2008

More existentialist blues adventures next time!

PS: Come to our launch! (EDIT: Thanks for coming to the launch! If you missed it, check us out at the basement)

EDIT: When I figure out to how leave the edited bits in with a line through them (just like Boing Boing), you'll be able to see when I rewrite stuff. Until then, if things change upon re-reading, its not me, its you. Or is it? Hmmmm.....