Ive always had a soft spot for Robert Cray, often overlooked in favor of BBKING, and overshadowed quite recently by Joe Bonamassa, Ive often felt he had more to offer, and with this, his 16th full length record he has struck gold.
The five time Grammy winner is back with 10 original tracks on ‘Nothin But Love’. It’s the standard main four member blues ensemble consisting of Robert Cray (vocals/guitar), Jim Pugh (keyboards), Cray Band co-founder Richard Cousins (bass) and Tony Braunagel (drums).
However what sets this apart is the producer on everybody’s lips at the moment, Kevin Shirley, who at this present time can do no wrong, he has recently produced albums for Europe and Joe Bonamassa, as well as Black Country Communion.
The album starts out with probably the best track in my opinion, the heartbreaking “(Won’t Be) Coming Home” with glorious picking before he launches into a stunning heart wrenching solo.
Lyrically, Robert keeps to the tried and tested Blues formula, well written meaningful blues ballads about the trials and tribulations of love, with an almost unhealthy emphasis on broken relationships. With song titles such as “Sadder Days,” “Fix This,” “I’ll Always Remember You”,( with a great use of horns ), and “Won’t Be Coming Home”, they really do not need any explanation from me.
Cray’s ability to blend the blues with rock and other rhythm’s such as Jazz has allowed him to explore other musical directions and has opened up a new fan base, and I see no reason why this shouldn’t continue, breaking new ground and gaining new fans. This to me is one of the best albums he has ever recorded, it wouldn’t surprise me if he didn’t win another Grammy, Hell, it would surprise me if he didn’t win. This is certainly a contender for Blues record of the year, and only Joe Bonamassa’s ‘Driving Towards The Daylight’, could beat it to that number 1 spot and take the title. 9/10.
01 – (Won’t Be) Coming Home
02 – Worry
03 – I’ll Always Remember You
04 – Side Dish
05 – A Memo
06 – Blues Get Off My Shoulder
07 – Fix This
08 – I’m Done Cryin’
09 – Great Big Old House
10 – Sadder Days
Robert Cray – Official Website
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