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Pete Anderson

Even Things Up

(Vizztone; US: 25 Jan 2011)

Honky Tonk Blues

Pete Anderson originally released this gut bucket of honky tonk blues back in October 2009, but Vizztone has reissued it with four sizzling bonus tracks. While Anderson’s a fine electric guitar player, his vocals are thin. That’s why the best tracks on Even Things Up are the instrumentals. He digs a solid groove on “Dogbone Shuffle” that allows the horns to wail behind him and blow down the house without getting in the way of the picking. His fret work on “Booker Twine” allows the B-3 organ to brew up a tasty a soulful strut that would sound right at home at Stax in 1969. On “Wes’ Side Blues” Anderson conjures up a breezy samba melody that unites North and South America in a jazzy way. The biggest treat Even Things Up offers is when Bekka Bramlett joins Anderson to sing on “Still in Love”.  The dark end of the street-style blues number evokes that feeling of late Saturday night when a person regrets doing what he’s just done, but knows that he would do it again in a heartbeat. One has to sin before repenting, and Sunday morning still has not arrived.

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Steven Horowitz has a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Iowa, where he continues to teach a three-credit online course on "Rock and Roll in America". He has written for many different popular and academic publications including American Music, Paste and the Icon. Horowitz is a firm believer in Paul Goodman's neofunctional perspective on culture and that Sam Cooke was right, a change is gonna come.


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This rockabilly blues hits all the expected notes, but there's not much more here than what's expected.
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