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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!


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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Rip Cat Records artists: Blue Lunch - Above The Fold - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Above The Fold, from Blue Lunch and it's lush! Opening with Ain't Trying To Kill Nobody, a cool groove with cool guitar work from Bob Frank and hot sax work from Chris Burge. With a cool story on vocals Frank makes for a cool track. On more laid back jazz track,  One Fine Day, Burge is joined by Bob Michael on trombone and Mike Rubin on trumpet for some real nice solo work. Pete London lays down cool harp work and Mike Sands on piano with Ramond DeForest on bass and Scott Flowers on drums make this a tight instrumental. Very nice! On boogie track The Long Game, London gets the chance to really blow out his harp and Frank takes a nice stretch on the fretboard. On swing track, Everybody's On The Phone, these guys really set a super groove with great harp work and solid vocals. Sands steps up with a cool piano solo coaxed along by the horn section. Excellent! On bluesy ballad, Woman I Bleed, the band pulls a nice contrast between a slow tear jerker and a hot swing. Frank sets the pace with his fast fingered guitar riffs. Very nice! No Time Like The Present opens with a strong big band sound featuring Burge, Michael and Rubin. Burge takes the lead and flies high on a super sax solo. Michael steps up right behind with smokin slide bone. Frank is tight on his heels with a cool jump solo of his own. Burge circles back as does Michael clearing room for hot riffs from Flowers and DeForest. Rubin rips a nice one of his own both open and muted. Hot! On spiritual/R&B styled track Where Do You Think It's Going, the band really hits it's stride with crisp vocals and warm organ work backing. London steps up on harp and with emphasis on bass and drums the band is almost in Ike and Tina land. Lake Erie Highball is another great jump track with hot horns. Michael is first up with his bone flaring. Burge slips in a never misses a step. With his warm sax tone and fluid runs, he's on fire. Excellent! Venita opens with beautiful chord work from Frank. A slow T-Bone Walker like track, this track oozes the blues. The horns are behind the vocals and Frank is at the ready with his blue jazz chords. Frank leads the way on this track instrumentally and plays those double stopped guitar riffs squeezing out the blues. Clocking in at over 6 minutes, this track seems to end too shortly. Very nice! With an almost calypso march, Love No More is short and sweet with tight horns and vocals. All I Needed is a classic pop ballad with standard jazz structure. An open invitation to radio airplay, the horns are strong and a super sexy sax solo by Burge sets the track off. Tossin' & Turnin' & Burnin has a bit of a Jimmy Reed feel but of course with a solid horn base. Burge again pulls out some super sax riffs and Frank fans the guitar with a tasty riff of his own. Vocal duet gives the track a more complex feel. Kattin' Around With Moe gets London back up front with harp and a cool blues swinger. Franks is chasing the beat on rhythm guitar and he and London duel their way down the blues trail. Very cool. Wrapping the release is the traditional Good News acapella with all male vocals - almost barbershop style. London, Frank, DeForest blend nicely for an memorable conclusion to another stellar release from Blue Lunch.  

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Obviously not from this release but a good representation of the band's work:


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