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Old 08-08-2019, 03:20 PM
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Default Charlie Musselwhite - Rough News (1997)

Charlie Musselwhite - Rough News (1997)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 279 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 106 Mb | Scans ~ 156 Mb | 00:46:57
Modern Electric Chicago Blues, Harmonica Blues | Pointblank | # 7243 8 42856 2 3

Harmonica ace Charlie Musselwhite falls between the more obvious generations of blues players, younger than its elder statesmen but considerably senior to young hot-shots like Jonny Lang and Kenny Wayne Shepherd. How, then, can he find a fresh hook to his music without resorting to attention-grabbing gimmicks? Except for two songs featuring producer/guitarist Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos, Charlie Musselwhite's 1997 album, Rough News, doesn't have any famous guests, but it stands out from the harmonica whiz's long and deep discography nonetheless. Musselwhite has pared down his sound so radically that every instrument has become a rhythm instrument. When these lean, groove-based arrangements are applied to tunes as simple and catchy as "Both Sides of Fence," "I Sat & Cried" and "Natural Born Lover," the results jump at the listener with the bare-basics excitement of early rock & roll. Musselwhite displays his elegant command of the mouth harp on two instrumental standards, "Sleepwalk" and "Harlem Nocturne," but the highlights are the songs where the simplicity of the material and the masterfulness of the musicians bring the best out in each other.

With much of the backing personnel returning from Charlie Musselwhite's outstanding 1993 Alligator release In My Time, a mediocre follow-up album would be unexpected. Yet something is missing from this Pointblank release, aside from the extensive liner notes. Musselwhite's voice is not as casual, his band not as loose, and the end result is an album that at times seems too formulaic. He undoubtedly still has a set of the best harp chops in the business, but the moments that rise to the top from this CD (such as the instrumental title track) are much less frequent than listeners spoiled by In My Time may care for.


01. Both Sides Of The Fence (3:58)
02. I Sat & Cried (3:34)
03. Sleepwalk (2:32)
04. Natural Born Lover (3:36)
05. Darkest Hour (3:50)
06. Harlem Nocturne (2:24)
07. Drifting Boy (3:31)
08. Rough Dried Woman (4:31)
09. Feel It In Your Heart (3:42)
10. Rainy Highway (4:51)
11. Clarksdale Boogie (3:40)
12. Rough News (6:50)

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