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Blues - Released February 2, 2018 | Ruf Records GmbH

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Without completely outshining his illustrious and late father, Bernard Allison has made more than a first name for himself in the blues world for more than twenty years, by, as Luther heartily advised him, not fearing the revenge of the purists by including in his music good amounts of rock, funk, soul, jazz and other genres… For this fourteenth studio album, he once again puts his foot in it by boldly venturing into territories that repel many blues enthusiasts, starting with his very pronounced fondness for funk. He begins on the offensive on “Crusin For A Bluesin”, a nervous R&B which swings in the style of his friend Stevie Ray, with whom he shared his first stage appearances, and we are hooked from the start by this sound which is both dynamic and crystal clear. Allison was inspired to renew contacts with Jim Gaines, a producer who had already done wonders with Santana, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Miles Davis, John Lee Hooker and, obviously, Luther Allison... With this wizard at the helm, the musician’s resources finally match his ambitions. It’s more than obvious with the following title, “Same Ole Feeling”, a rock pop funky track that the Rolling Stones wouldn’t have disavowed, as it somewhat sounds like “Miss You”, even if the guitar would rather belong alongside B. B. King. When you have such a sound, you can afford to do everything, or almost. If “Backdoor Man” goes back to a more classic blues rock—with however an impressive slide section—“Let It Go” and its pop rock melody will quickly get inside your mind if you listen to it two or three times. As if he had invited Prince, Allison pursues with a very groovy “Night Train”, before making you enter his jazz club with the surprising “Kiddeo”, whose melody also evokes (by sheer coincidence?) Prince and his “Girls & Boys”. While carefully avoiding delving into clichés or parody, the boogie blues of “Leave Your Ego” sounds surprisingly subtle and sophisticated, despite a very heavy rhythmic and a devilish Hendrix-like solo. You have to wait for the eighth track for the first concession to traditional blues on “Blues Party”, which pays homage to the great figures in blues history who have cradled the childhoods of both Bernard Allison and his father. On the opposite, the blues ballad “Hey Lady” should be brought closer to the more mainstream productions of Eric Clapton or John Mayer. “Look At Mabel” would also be right at home on a Clapton album—when he is on a JJ Cale perfusion—or even on a disc from Mark Knopfler. With a respectful cover of Albert King’s “You’re Gonna Need Me”, Allison takes his leave with a touch of simplicity contrasting with the sophistication of the rest of the album with “Castle”, a tender folk rock ballad, to such an extent that we still wonder if Let It Go should still be labelled as “blues”. Admittedly its roots are more than perceptible. But they were just as much perceptible with Steely Dan, to whom you’ll think about more than once while listening to this album which will prove ideal to test a new Hi-Fi system. ©JPS/Qobuz
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Blues - Released October 19, 2018 | Ruf Records GmbH

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HI-RES$17.49
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Blues - Released January 31, 2020 | Ruf Records GmbH

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Blues - Released January 16, 2015 | Jazzhaus Records

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Blues - Released August 10, 2010 | CC Entertainment

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Blues - Released April 28, 2006 | RUF Records

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Blues - Released February 5, 2008 | CC Entertainment

Guitar-slinging progeny of the great Chicago bluesman Luther Allison, Bernard Allison has proved that great music runs in the blood with a series of high power urban blues albums. Beginning with the viciously funky title track, CHILLS & THRILLS immediately kicks the party into overdrive, briefly letting up only to get a bit jammy (“So Devine”) or momentarily reflective (“Compromising for Your Needs”).
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Blues - Released February 5, 2008 | CC Entertainment

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Blues - Released August 22, 2006 | JSP Records

As the title and cover art suggests, Triple Fret is a player's album. Although Bernard Allison gets star billing (and does all the vocals), this is a trio record, with fellow electric blues guitarists Larry McCray and Carl Weathersby contributing as much guitar firepower as Allison. Even better, second-generation Hammond organ legend Lucky Peterson guests, adding some welcome musical variety to the otherwise fret-heavy selection and getting his own showcase, the smoking seven-minute instrumental workout "Where's Lucky?" That leaves the songwriting as the only weak spot, but unfortunately, it's pretty seriously weak. Most of the songs on Triple Fret are hackneyed Chicago blues riffs with self-referential lyrics about how hard it is to be a bluesman. Tune out the lyrics and the undistinguished chord changes and the sheer enjoyment of the trio's playing comes through. For some, however, that might not be quite enough. ~ Stewart Mason
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Blues - Released May 11, 2006 | RUF Records

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Blues - Released April 28, 2006 | RUF Records

Blues - Released | INAKUSTIK

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Blues - Released April 28, 2006 | RUF Records

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Blues - Released April 25, 2006 | JSP Records

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Blues - Released April 28, 2006 | RUF Records