LANDSLIDE RECORDS 12017
ROCK AND ROLL GIRL–THE DAY BEFORE TOMORROW–JUST LUCKY I GUESS–COOLEST FOOLS–REFUGEE–MAD ABOUT YOU–DEATH LETTER–21ST CENTURY MAN–CABBAGETOWN SHUFFLE–SING TOGETHER
One of the really cool things about Atlanta-based blues quartet Delta Moon is the guitar tandem of Tom Gray and Mark Johnson, each of whom trade vocals and guitar parts throughout their latest set for Landslide Records, “Cabbagetown.” Franher Joseph is on bass, and Marlon Patton is on drums as the fellows romp thru nine originals and one really sweet cover of a mix of blues, roots, and even a touch of gospel.
The biography of many a rocker is laid out in the opening cut, “Rock And Roll Girl,” where “I tried to fit in, but I never really did,” so “I joined a rock and roll band!” Mark is on lap steel on this one. The age-old adage of “nothing beats a failure but a try” is the theme of The Coolest Fools,” with those ultra-cool twin guitars doin’ their collective thing! Society’s obsession with gadgetry and instant gratification is the story of the “21st Century Man,” while Marlon’s uptown funk backbeat puts a sho’ nuff new spin on Son House’s ol’ “Death Letter-now, how do you reckon that letter read?,” with well-placed harp from Jon Liebman.
We had two favorites, too. Undoubtedly, the set’s most topical and powerful cut is “Refugee.” A brooding, thunderous beat sets the backdrop for a series of spoken-word verses from the band members, as each boldly represents members of an oppressed society seeking safe haven in a strange land. And, just as sure as the sunrise promises the salvation of a new day, the lively instrumental, “Cabbagetown Shuffle,” is a refreshing blast of Delta-fied, old-time gospel, with Tom on Hawaiian guitar and Mark on slide.
Delta Moon won the IBC’s in 2003, and Tom Gray was named the American Roots Music Association Blues Songwriter of the Year in 2008. Unique dual slide guitar arrangements and strong songwriting define “Cabbagetown” as a fine listen, indeed! Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.