B.B. King - The Best Of The Early Years

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B.B. King - The Best Of The Early Years

Postby blueswriter » Thu May 31, 2007 7:36 pm

B.B. King
The Best Of The Early Years
Ace (2007) 1150

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25 tracks, 76 minutes, essential. While the jury is still out, this reviewer could easily vote for The Best Of The Early Years from Ace as the flat-out best blues guitar release of the year. We'll hold off on the voting until all the entrants are in, but make no mistake about it, this disc is packed from front to back with sizzling, slashing six-string insanity from none other than B.B. King, and this was back when he was a young and hungry performer. King's tone and attack have always been easy to recognize, but to bear witness to that unmistakable tone and attack developing from his early years through what might be considered his early/mid-period is truly a dazzling experience. The twenty-five tracks presented here are laced with amazing depth, presence and crispness thanks to Ace's continued efforts in remastering. With crashing shuffles including She's Dynamite, Please Love Me, You Upset Me Baby, Days Of Old or the mad-scientist experiment Ace undertook by splicing three different takes of Why I Sing The Blues together to deliver a new track, B.B.'s guitar rides roughshod over a swinging band. Fear not, the master digs into a bevy of slow killers as well with 3 O'Clock Blues, When My Heart Beats Like A Hammer, Five Long Years or its brilliant counterpart, Ten Long Years with an absolutely brutal guitar break that still slices with the sharpest straight razors anywhere. When B.B. King was a young man still fairly fresh on the blues scene, he was developing what would become a master's touch of tone, dynamics and phrasing with his guitar and voice. The evidence lying in this disc proves that his degree came pretty fast indeed. The listening is top-shelf!

Ace Records - UK

© 2007 by Craig Ruskey
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