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I wish you had stronger material
Review written by John Fitzgerald, February 26th, 2005
I would say that this is the weakest of the BSBB albums. Though pleasant, it just doesn't have the strong material that the other albums have. Although some songs are better than others, there will be little here to make a real lasting impression on you. An obvious high point here is the guitar instrumental chugger "Uranus" though oddly the writing credit of the song goes to Brunning. This is a virtual carbon copy of this song's other take (released on "Trackside blues" and known there as "Ah soul") though the version here is perhaps smoother overall and there are times I prefer this one to the more fiery "Ah soul" but this may help you determine which your pleasure is in regards to this track. Green is distinctive regardless of take. Whatever the writing status of "Uranus", Brunning actually did write 2 songs here and apparently sings lead vocals on them as well, "C & W blues" is a tale about an annoying neighbor and it's self explanatory as to what "On the road" is about. They are both quirky and amusing though perhaps admittedly elementary. Brunning's vocals may seem shaky at first but he holds up his own with the others here though naturally Dave Kelly is the best lead vocalist present for the proceedings. His sister Jo Ann would have been top of the heap here but she is very under used on the platter and I think this is critical to this albums downfall. You're left thinking if only she had sang this one, maybe it would've been better for many tracks. Dave starts us out well here though with the shaking title track with his strong vocals backed nicely by Bob Hall's ragging piano and effective harmonica toots and maracas but then we get in to the slow, dragging "Checking on my baby" which features guitar, harmonica, horns and piano but unfortunately none of them really end up taking the lead. "Broken hearted" suffers the same fate which as a result, goes nowhere. "I'm a star" is a forgettable Hall shuffle though he was obviously trying to follow the same idea Brunning had with "On the road" though the piano guru does better, as always, with his solo piano boogie woogie piece "Bob's boogie". "Mean old 57" is a fast poker but it doesn't really work, Hall's vocals on this (and on many tracks here in fact) sound like Duster Bennett but naturally, not as convincing as Bennett's. "Bad luck" is semi interesting as it's at least different to what we had been hearing with it's "wounded horse" sounding clucking rhythms, acoustic guitar and flute parts. "All right with me" is a speedy shuffle which does work better than many others here but it certainly won't blow you away and the closing "Good golly miss Kelly" is a sax, guitar & piano driven Buddy Holly type galloping boogie with funny lyrics but it makes you wonder how seriously they were actually taking all of this. This album is not bad by any means but you're better starting off with any other BSBB album before this one.