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Eddie Turner - Rise (NorthernBlues Music)

Cuban born and Chicago raised Turner has been influenced by his Cuban roots and the blues, rock and R&B that he heard in his youth. This all shows in his debut for Canadian label NorthernBlues. Turner played with Otis Taylor in 1995 and is generally credited with creating the Otis Taylor sound using his psychedelic guitar to great effect.

The eponymous opener is an eerie beginning but you will be hypnotised by the unceasing rhythm. Ask Myself Why is a sleazy blues. Turner has a silky voice and an easy guitar style that belies his talent. He turns to acoustic slide par excellence for The River and this is as fluid as any of the great rivers. It's always a brave decision to take on a Jimi Hendrix song and Eddie's version of The Wind Cries Mary is certainly passable. The only criticism that I have is that his voice is just a little wispy for the song.

Resurrection has him back on form – searing electric slide over an almost Western acoustic base. It's Me has psychedelic guitar that will take you back to the late 60s/early 70s and the Johnny 'Guitar' Watson song, Gangster Of Love is given a strange, almost spoken vocal. This is a little disjointed at times but probably has the best straight guitar playing so far. Eddie looks for inspiration in gospel for Sin and the almost a cappella treatment works well.

Freddie King's Play It Cool is given the full Turner treatment and, with stinging guitar, a few more like this would have gone down well. Privileged Life is a sophisticated urban blues and Confusion Illusion shows that it's not always too difficult to come up with something new. The album closes with Secret, a funky amalgamation of all that Eddie Turner is about.
(From NetRhythms)




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