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Thunder - Robert Johnson's Tombstone (CD)

Thunder
Robert Johnson's Tombstone
by Grigoris Chronis at 11 November 2006, 12:31 PM

Is there a more 'classic' Rock' influenced band out there, these days? I dunno the current status of Atlanta, GA 'freak n' roll' vagabonds The Black Crowes, but British 'rootsy' rockers Thunder will fit like a glove to the likes of your (once) Free/Bad Company 'addicted' loyal uncle. This year's Robert Johnson's Tombstone adds to a series of 'whiskey roller' albums that surely illustrate the transfer of musical knowledge between eras and breeds.
When Duran Duran(!) axeman Andy Taylor met the post-Terraplane revamped outfit, the chemistry was ideal (have the suspicion the band's name origins from Taylor's 'cult' 1987 debut solo effort…or not?) and Back Street Symphony (released in 1990 via the EMI label and produced by Taylor) marked the beginning of a series of blues-based hard rockin' albums that pushed the band's fame - and sellouts (18 Top 40 singles in the UK alone) during the first ten years - to a grand level. Free/Bad Company/Firm legendary singer Paul Rodgers had now found his 'next generation' double in the 'gunpowder' throat of Danny Bowes and even the 'choppy' market of America bowed to the vagrancy of this quintet. Last year's The Magnificent Seventh was something 'tiny' less than a magnificent album and - thus - the anticipation after an exhausting two-tour reckless period was high for the Thunder clan.
Well, if you are fond of what The Magnificent Seventh proposed for your Rock Club night booze, then there's nothing to be afraid of during the audition of Robert Johnson's Tombstone. This - also - is the weakest point of this album. Predictable but 'classic', normal but beautiful, honest but cliche, 'smoking' but flat (songwriting wise) is what you get by the track listing. You'd expect something else from the likes of Dirty Dream, Don't Wanna Talk About Love and The Devil Made Me Do It? Nah, same ol' song an' dance is the story. Bowes's vocal lines are somehow 'linear' in relation to previous singings, but no objection can be raised in general. The rest of the team is alike; slow-to-mid-to-up tempos in support of 70s-based guitar chord/soloing while - as a result or cause? - the production (Luke Morley handled it himself) does not make any majestic difference from the band's other creations.
Robert Johnson's Tombstone resembles to a dish at your area's grill house. You liked it the first time; you'll always have the need to taste it again. If you've denied it in the first place, limited are the chances you'll swallow it nicely. Anyway, you can give it a try with tunes like Robert Johnson's Tombstone and Last Man Standing any time…

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
Robert Johnson's Tombstone
Dirty Dream
A Million Faces
Don't Wanna Talk About Love
The Devil Made Me Do It
Last Man Standing
My Hour Of Darkness
Andy Warhol Said
What A Beautiful Day
It's All About You
Stubborn Kinda Love
Lineup:
Ben Matthews - Rhythm Guitar, Keyboards
Chris Childs - Bass
Danny Bowes - Vocals
Harry James - Drums
Luke Morley - Guitar
Record Label: Frontiers
     


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