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Michael Powers

Revolutionary Boogie

(Zoho Roots; US: 9 Aug 2011; UK: 3 Oct 2011)

A Solid Album of Guitar-based Blues

It’s tough to make out what, exactly, is so revolutionary about Michael Powers’ Revolutionary Boogie. To be sure, Powers knows his material, and his brand of meaty, guitar-based blues is powerful and satisfying. However, the tunes remain well within the confines of the genre. Not that this is any terrible thing. Powers possesses a strong, expressive voice, and his singing nicely complements his thunderous guitar slinging. Throw in a few accents – the burbling organ on “I Miss Your Kissin’,” the occasional splash of horns – and there’s plenty to like here. A cover of Hendrix’s “Spanish Castle Magic” falls a bit flat, but is made up for by a spirited rendition of Willie Dixon’s “I Ain’t Superstitious.” The swaggering, instrumental title track and the frenetic “Bleeker Street Strut” are both all-out rockers that would bring alive any dance floor worth the name. This is a solid, energetic album for guitar aficionados and fans of modern electric blues. Revolutionary? Not quite. Very good? You bet.

Rating:

DAVID MAINE is a novelist and essayist. His books include The Preservationist (2004), Fallen (2005), The Book of Samson (2006), Monster, 1959 (2008) and An Age of Madness (2012). He has contributed to The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Esquire.com and NPR.com, among other outlets. He is a lifelong music obsessive whose interests range from rock to folk to hip-hop to international to blues. He currently lives in western Massachusetts, where he works in human services. Catch up with his blog, The Party Never Stops, at davidmaine.blogspot.com, or become his buddy on Facebook (or Twitter or Google+ or whatever you prefer) to keep up with reviews and other developments.


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