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Memo Gonzalez & The Bluescasters

PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:36 pm
by blueswriter
Memo Gonzalez & The Bluescasters
Crosscut (2009) ccd 11099


12 tracks, 49 minutes. Excellent. Since there’s never been a good enough catch-all definition of blues, we’re all left as listeners to make up our own minds as to what it‘s all about. One thing is for sure, Memo Gonzalez & The Bluescasters are about blues in its many forms. They rock, they boogie, they get down in the alley and they broadcast their brand of blues and gritty Texas swagger on Dynomite, their latest release on Crosscut Records out of Germany. From Lowell Fulson’s Tramp-like groove on steroids evident in Dynomite Nitro, or the Guitar Slim-infused Please Come Home with stunning six-string antics from Kai Strauss, these guys mean business. Check out their highly effective reworking of Tiny Kennedy’s Strange Kind Of Feeling, where guest pianist Jan Karow tosses in wonderful flourishes beneath and around Memo’s throaty vocals, while the rhythm section of Erkan Özdemir’s bass and Henk Punter’s drums drives the song effortlessly. Freddy King’s Double-Eyed Whammy also gets its share of tough, Texas treatment with plenty of stinging guitar. The efforts of Strauss are featured heavily throughout, if anything probably a little too much, as Memo’s solid harmonica work is relegated to a mere one quarter of the disc. He’s certainly powerful enough showcasing his fine chromatic work on What’s In A Name and equally strong in the shuffling D Jump, but his excellent harp skills deserve more space. Dynomite is certainly another winner in the Gonzalez catalog and sure to please fans around the blues globe.

© 2010 by Craig Ruskey