Saturday, May 21, 2016

RICH ROBINSON: "Through a Crooked Sun"

Rating: Re-issue
Label: Eagle/Circle Sound 2016
Review by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

Known as 'that bloke' and one of The Black Crowes most frequently googled members, Rich Robinson can boast several bestselling solo albums. Sorta? Kinda? This is however the re-release at eagle-records of his second attempt at world domination, a mini-memoir detailing Richy's transition from shake-your-moneymaker artist to stone cold sober, hobo-like prophet and modern day singer/songwriter and also the likes of Jeff Beck, Jackson Browne, JJ Cole, Clapton and Young. A true tale of early 70's and plenty of country influences.

The Crowes took a long break from touring and recording in 2011 and 2012 and Richy had a bunch of songs in hand and was eager to get in and start recording. He's had a fair share of life experience too, touring non stop and living out on the road, Through A Crooked Sun, came out sounding like the complete opposite of a busy schedule and living in the fast lane. It's quite the laid back, rootsy, folky, organic sounding affair.

For instance. A piece such as "All Along The Way", conjures up vivid images of Harleys, driving down the dusty U.S. highway, wind in your hair and merely a dirty bandanna to protect your grey cells. Storytelling and thought-worthy material go hand in hand with the blend of blues, folk-rock, country, and traditional singer/songwriter stuff. Through A Crooked Sun is as well qualified as any of the above mentioned acts and artists to wear the badge of honesty and well crafted melodies. I like it. I like it a lot. Warren Hayes (Gov't Mule) guest appears along with Jazz musicians John Medeski & Karl Berger. This 2016 release includes two bonus tracks and previously unreleased versions of It's Not Easy and Falling Again. Recommended.

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