Thursday, 15 March 2012

Record Review - Blue Shaddy

Published in the March issue of Australian Guitar.

Blue Shaddy
Across The Road
Independent / Only Blues Music

The first thing that’ll strike you about Across The Road, the fifth album from WA rootsters Blue Shaddy, is how comparatively low key it is.  Their last effort, 2008’s Bury My Ghost, was a foot-stomper to be sure, as their live set is in spades, whereas this one seems to be quieter, more considered, a lot more subtle.

The slide playing of frontman Jim McClelland is, for the most part, very much an accompaniment to his voice and the harmonica work from brother Belly is the same, save for a few choice ‘freak outs’ here and there.  This strikes me as an odd move for the group, as they’ve built their rep as a pretty high-octane act, particularly in the early days when they sported two percussionists.  Still, it’s delivered with feeling and passion making for a solid, albeit rather reticent, result.

Samuel J. Fell

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