Walter Trout set out to make a crunching album of guitar-driven blues-rock, and that’s just what he has done with Common Ground. Like a latter-day Lonnie Mack, Trout combines elements of blues, country, soul and rock to reinvigorate a genre that can at times seem moribund. “May Be a Fool” kicks off the proceedings convincingly, courtesy of wailing harp, twangy guitar and a rhythm section that doesn’t so much tear the roof off as vaporize it entirely. The rest of the album paints a variety of sonic textures, with slow songs like “Open Book” providing oases of respite between foot-stompers like “Loaded Gun” and “No Regrets”, which sounds almost like a lost Jimi Hendrix blues tune. Trout’s voice is expressive enough to convey angst in “Her Other Man”, tenderness in “Song for My Guitar” or humor in “Hudson Had Help.” He won’t win any awards for envelope-pushing, but he sure knows how to pick, stomp, and holler. That’s plenty.
We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong online. Please consider a donation to support our work as an independent publisher devoted to the arts and humanities. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where advertising no longer covers our costs. We need your help to keep PopMatters publishing. Thank you.
// Sound Affects
"Natalie Hemby's Puxico is a standout debut from a songwriter who has been behind the scenes for over a decade.READ the article