You don't usually think of blues records and innovative record production in the same thought. Or if you do, you might think of some yucky overproduced album run through Pro Tools like the recent BB King & Eric Clapton release. This CD is really interesting though as it's not only very well produced and recorded, but it's also got a great, soulful feel too it. What also really sets this apart is that a lot of the production and arrangements come from a hip-hop sensibility, which on the face of it sounds like some kind of really dumb major label A & R guys idea of a marketing coup and an a mis- matched aural and stylistic piece of work. But, this not only works, but it works very well. Co-produced by John Porter (Taj Mahal, The Smiths) with DJ Swamp (Beck) on turntables. Just about every song has some kind of unique hip-hop flavor to it- turntables, looped drums from vinyl, or a Snoop Dog style keyboard line, yet it's still firmly rooted in a blues tradition that somehow sounds more 'real' than most of the Michelob commercial kind of blues that are popular today. This is one of the more interesting new albums I've heard in a while. (Fat Possum/Epitaph)

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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