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Blues - Released November 22, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released August 23, 2019 | Provogue Records

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After emerging from the sacred pedal steel tradition in the African-American Pentecostal church, Robert Randolph has expanded the sonic possibilities of his instrument. Under Randolph's fingers, the pedal steel roars as the star of his fiery live shows, exploding the common perception that its best use was adding atmosphere behind country music weepers. After eight albums Randolph has settled into a forceful soul-gospel-blues-groove which he continues to enrich and explore with each new record. In this collaboration, recorded by skilled Nashville producer Dave Cobb (who also played guitar and co-wrote five of the album's tunes), Randolph mixes things up with a cover of the Pops Staples' "Simple Man," and on the funky, Meters-like "Second Hand Man." "Cut Em Loose" is a powerful hard rock number led by the kind of buzzsaw tone that won the jam band audience over to his cause years ago. The musical intensity increases on "Living Off the Love You Give," with Randolph letting loose on fierce, razor-like lead lines. Brighter Days closes with "Strange Train," another driving, jumpy, R&B-drenched dance tune where Randolph shows again why he is the pedal steel guitar's leading virtuoso. © Robert Baird / Qobuz
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Blues - Released August 23, 2019 | Provogue Records

Robert Randolph, after emerging from the sacred pedal steel tradition in the African-American Pentecostal church, has expanded the sonic possibilities of his instrument. Under Randolph's fingers, the pedal steel roars the star of his fiery live shows, exploding the common perception that its best use is adding atmosphere behind country music weepers. After eight albums Randolph has settled into a forceful soul-gospel-blues-groove which he continues to enrich and explore with each new record. In this collaboration, recorded by skilled Nashville producer Dave Cobb, Randolph mixes things up with a cover of the Staples pops' "Simple Man," and on the funky, Meters -like "Second Hand Man." "Cut Em Loose" is a powerful hard rock band by the kind of buzzsaw The musical intensity increases on "Live Off the Love You Give," with Randolph letting loose on fierce, razor-like lead lines.Brighter Days closed with "Strange Train," another driving, jumpy, R & B-drenched dance tune where Randolph shows up again. © Robert Baird / Qobuz
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Blues - Released July 12, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released July 12, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released June 28, 2019 | Provogue Records

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This might seem obvious, but jam bands tend to make pretty good live albums. So when Gov’t Mule decided they’d celebrate their 25 years of existence by releasing Bring On The Music: Live at The Capitol Theatre, a 4 disc set with over 5 hours of music, we rejoiced. The performances were recorded in 2018, and they are loyal to Haynes’ multi-genre brand of music. Drawing from the best of over 300 songs, Danny Louis (keys, backing vocals), Andy Hess (bass) and Matt Abts (drums) are top-notch improvisers. But this is never at the cost of energetic performances. That’s where many jam bands fall short: they sacrifice dynamics and coherence for 10-minute pentatonic solos. Gov’t Mule isn’t one of those bands! The rhythm section is tight – synergy is the priority behind every musical choice. On Trane/Eternity’s Breath/ St Stephen, the communication between Hess and Abts is just phenomenal. They transition with ease between prog and jazz, jazz and blues. Revolution Come, Revolution Go also shows how much the quartet can groove. Their improv is always built on the steady foundations of Haynes’ writing. From that starting point, they are given free reign to play on which ever style they please. Bring On The Music: Live at The Capitol is the crowning jewel to a long and successful career. © Alexis Renaudat/Qobuz
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Blues - Released June 28, 2019 | Provogue Records

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This might seem obvious, but jam bands tend to make pretty good live albums. So when Gov’t Mule decided they’d celebrate their 25 years of existence by releasing Bring On The Music: Live at The Capitol Theatre, a 4 disc set with over 5 hours of music, we rejoiced. The performances were recorded in 2018, and they are loyal to Haynes’ multi-genre brand of music. Drawing from the best of over 300 songs, Danny Louis (keys, backing vocals), Andy Hess (bass) and Matt Abts (drums) are top-notch improvisers. But this is never at the cost of energetic performances. That’s where many jam bands fall short: they sacrifice dynamics and coherence for 10-minute pentatonic solos. Gov’t Mule isn’t one of those bands! The rhythm section is tight – synergy is the priority behind every musical choice. On Trane/Eternity’s Breath/ St Stephen, the communication between Hess and Abts is just phenomenal. They transition with ease between prog and jazz, jazz and blues. Revolution Come, Revolution Go also shows how much the quartet can groove. Their improv is always built on the steady foundations of Haynes’ writing. From that starting point, they are given free reign to play on which ever style they please. Bring On The Music: Live at The Capitol is the crowning jewel to a long and successful career. © Alexis Renaudat/Qobuz
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Blues - Released June 28, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released April 26, 2019 | Provogue Records

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From his origins as Wes Montgomery’s worthy heir to the funky Give Me the Night, his cover of On Broadway, his partnering with Al Jarreau, his participation on the Gorillaz’s The Now Now and his tributes to Nat King Cole, George Benson has always shown that he handles large tasks with ease. But above all, he remains one of the best jazz guitarists of his generation, whatever the style. At 76 years old, the funky virtuoso from Pittsburgh pays homage to the Mecca of music, New Orleans, and two pioneers of rock’n’roll that were lost to the world in 2017, Chuck Berry and Fats Domino. The record features ten covers by the two geniuses that George Benson performs with a sense of refinement. His bluesy style and ferocious skill are even held back slightly. In its place the guitarist offers a tribute of class, temperance and subtlety. ©Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Blues - Released April 26, 2019 | Provogue Records

Following up 2013's urbane Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole, George Benson returns with another tribute production, 2019's ebullient Walking to New Orleans: Remembering Chuck Berry and Fats Domino. Interestingly, while Benson is best known for his funky instrumental jazz of the '70s and '80s, and smooth R&B crooning of the '80s and '90s, both of these latter-career tributes find him tackling material from even older traditions. Where Inspiration was a lushly swinging standards album, Walking to New Orleans is all blues grit and old-school R&B swagger. Though primarily influenced by jazz artists like Wes Montgomery and Charlie Christian, Benson certainly owes at least a modicum of his soulful style to early rock legends Berry and Domino, both of whom helped shape the sound of modern rock and pop music. As Benson grew up in Pittsburgh, the album's title evokes a conceptual travelogue as he moves from the Midwest through Berry's home state of Missouri, all the way down South to Domino's hometown of New Orleans. To help achieve this rootsy trek, Benson worked with producer Kevin Shirley (John Hiatt, Aerosmith, Joe Bonamassa) at Nashville's Ocean Way Studios, where he also conscripted the assistance of pros like drummer/music director Greg Morrow, guitarist Rob McNelley, pianist Kevin McKendree, and bassist Alison Prestwood. The results are loose and straightforward as Benson (primarily showcased here as a singer) takes on Berry favorites like "Walking," "Nadine (Is It You?)," and "Memphis, Tennessee," as well as Domino hits like "Ain't That a Shame," "I Heart You Knocking," and "Blue Monday." These are earthy and robust productions that never stray too far afield of their rock & roll source. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Blues - Released April 22, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released March 28, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released March 15, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released February 8, 2019 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released October 5, 2018 | Provogue Records

It took Doyle Bramhall II 15 years to deliver Rich Man, the sequel to 2001's Welcome, but only two to follow that 2016 record with Shades. Appropriately, Shades feels looser than its predecessor and more direct, too. Where Rich Man was dotted with epics, Bramhall keeps things generally concise on Shades, and he also firmly grounds the album in soul. The first sounds on Shades may recall the thick, heavy blues grooves of the Black Keys but by the time Bramhall gets to the chorus of "Love and Pain," he spins the song into classic '60s R&B. He's too restless a musician to stay there -- with the Greyhounds, he kicks up some noise on "Live Forever," the Tedeschi Trucks Band pulls out some deep blues on a cover of Bob Dylan's "Going Going Gone," and he indulges in psychedelia on "Parvanah" -- but he keeps circling back to sounds steeped in Southern soul. It results in a more cohesive album than its predecessor, but it's the lack of fussiness that makes Shades a better record: now that he's just knocking out songs and records, his music feels bracing and immediate. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Blues - Released July 20, 2018 | Provogue Records

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The Apocalypse Blues Revue is coming back strong with this second album released by Provogue, The Shape Of Blues To Come. A rather dangerous music! Did the Florida-based American band sell their soul to the devil in exchange for such mastery of electric blues? The question can be raised. Made up of Shannon Larkin (drums), Brian Carpenter (bass), Ray Cerbone (vocals) and Tony Rombola (guitar), the quartet respects the essence of blues while still imposing their own style. Right from the first track, Open Spaces, the suspense is at its peak. A gong, followed by whispers, then a deep, wearisome singing, almost voodoo-esque. In 2016, the band had already taken this path down to the purgatory with their first eponymous album. Two years later, they venture towards hell itself, for a diabolical concert. Between metal and roots music, the Apocalypse Blues Revue is capable of composing around blues as well as moving away from it. With them, boredom is forbidden. Incendiary riffs, an energetic voice swinging on the chorus of Have You Heard?! and carried by Larkin’s rhythmic force… There’s nothing to envy to heaven! There is a Morrison vibe to To Hell With You, but in this case Jim would be dressed in a rather Goth style to announce the apocalypse and the quartet’s takeover. © Anna Coluthe/Qobuz
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Blues - Released July 20, 2018 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released July 29, 2016 | Provogue Records

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Blues - Released July 5, 2013 | Provogue Records

Omar Dykes, of Omar & the Howlers, pays tribute to blues icon Howlin' Wolf on Runnin' with the Wolf. All of the tracks on this disc were written by either Wolf or Willie Dixon except for the Omar original "Runnin' with the Wolf." Dykes stays close to the original versions of these songs, which most listeners have heard in some form or other: "The Red Rooster," "Back Door Man," "Smokestack Lightning," "Wang Dang Doodle," and "Killin' Floor." That doesn't mean these are straight covers. The passion in the performances is undeniable, but so is the fun these musicians are obviously having. Dykes has the perfect voice for this project and is complemented by Derek O'Brien on guitar, Ronnie James on bass, Ted Roddy on harp, and Wes Starr on drums along with Mark Kazanoff and Les Izmore on saxophones, Nick Connolly on organ, and Mike Buck on percussion. © Al Campbell /TiVo
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Blues - Released June 7, 2013 | Provogue Records