I send a lot of musicians over to John Horton's Popa's Tunes, so I always appreciate it when he sends someone my way. The guy's got good taste. And, honestly, he can do a way better job than I can explaining why Love is the Devil is -- in his words -- one of the best debut albums this year. He talks about the many blues traditions the New York-based duo incorporates and their deep respect for the material.
I don't really know a lot about that. But I do know they know how to play a blues song.
I will say it's hard for me to tell which songs are originals and which are venerable covers. Reading the liner notes to this album, it's easy to see singer and guitarist Bill Hammer's craftsman-like approach to his art. Everything is intentional, but none of these songs are rote. Melissa Tong's nimble violin provides a homey counterpoint to the band's otherwise aggressive wall of sound. Bonus points: they like to play up in Harlem, which is way more convenient for me to get to.
Check out the CD release party
June 16, 7:30 PM
Shrine World Music Venue in NYC (2271 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd (Seventh Ave) just below 134th St.
She Gave Me Joy
Pork Chop Willie -- Official, Facebook, CDBaby