Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Record Review - Old Gray Mule

Published in the Shortlist section of the Sydney Morning Herald, October 25 2013.

Old Gray Mule
No Sleep ‘Til Memphis

Texan CR Humphrey, aka Old Gray Mule, proves he’s not one to sit idly by, releasing his fifth cut, No Sleep ‘Til Memphis a mere nine months after late 2012’s Like A Apple On A Tree. With this new one, he also proves that there’s more to boogie blues than meets the eye – this is an evolution.

Bringing in drummer JJ Wilburn and enlisting a range of guests, Humphrey this time uses boogie as a base form which to build. They inject a gospel feel to the vocals of ‘Funkyard Dog/Stay With Me’; the hip hop lyrical addition on ‘My Lyin’ Ass’ (courtesy of MCs Manateemann and dR K@OS) works surprisingly well; the acoustic treatment of ‘Howlin’’, courtesy of the sublime Jimmy ‘Duck’ Holmes, is a masterstroke; and the psychedelic stretch of ‘Lyrics By J-Dub’ caps off a winner. This is a blues party of a record at its heart, but CR is evolving solidly as he powers ahead.

Samuel J. Fell

Old Gray Mule are currently on tour in Australia - check out tour dates, and more info on the band, here.

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