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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, August 29, 2013

Provogue Records artist: Leslie West - Still Climbing - New Release Review

I just received the newest release (October 29, 2013), Still Climbing, from Leslie West and it has exactly what you listen to a Leslie West for.... gutsy vocals, a driving beat and flaming guitars! Opening with Dyin' Since The Day I Was Born, West is wide open on his amp, all volume controls and his vocals. With a strong metal influence, West shows all of the patience of a freight train with grinding riffs and pinched harmonics. Busted, Disgusted or Dead takes a more moderate pace with flashy sliding blues riffs from West and long time slideman Johnny Winter. Fade Into You is a 3/4 ballad with a solid melody giving West the opportunity to fire up his vocal chords and a wide open door to bust down with powerful fat guitar riffs. Real nice! Not Over You At All has a real cool intro with the smokin sound of an overdriven tube amp. Surprisingly a sax solo on this track takes a different direction than I would typically associate with West. A cool melodic guitar solo which I do think of with West is a prominent feature of this track. An acoustic track, Tales Of Woe is particularly strong. The opening, which appears to be played on nylon string guitar provides a nice backdrop for Wests rugged vocals and searing electric guitar soloing. On Feeling Good made famous by Traffic, celebrates Wests battle with cancer and diabetes with screaming guitar riffs and sharing vocals with Dee Snider (Twisted Sister). Classic Percy Sledge soul track, When A Man Loves A Woman, features guitar slinger and contemporary soul/blues singer Jonny Lang. This is a perfect track for these two guys to share the vocal lead as well as their love for the blues in smoking guitar riffs. Original Mountain classic Long Red has a fresh feel but the signature Mountain sound. You know it when you hear it. Don't Ever let Me Go again has a strong "metal" sound with driving drum work and searing lead work over melodic rhythm guitar. Rev Jones Time is a very cool interpretation of 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow" on lower guitar frets or baritone guitar and I really like it. A suitable ending to an explosive release.

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