Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Seals, Vivino, Merritt|
Genres: Blues, Pop
When Son Seals' self-titled debut was released in 1973, his tutelage under blues greats like Sonny Boy Williamson and Albert King gave way to an identity as a new master of modern electric blues. Seals's maiden 21st-centur... more »
When Son Seals' self-titled debut was released in 1973, his tutelage under blues greats like Sonny Boy Williamson and Albert King gave way to an identity as a new master of modern electric blues. Seals's maiden 21st-century release, Lettin' Go, once again encapsulates all the things that have cemented that identity for an international following: painfully jagged guitar riffs, uncompromising, emotional vocals, and chops cut on a lifetime of jook joints and hard livin'. The record represents something of a departure for this notorious traditionalist. An acoustic guitar opens the record, which in Seals's repertoire is a rare sound indeed. Tracks like "Blues Holy Ghost" incorporate gospel stylings and sentiments. There's even a more-or-less straight-up rock track here, "Osceola Rock," and a guest appearance from Trey Anastasio from the rock band Phish. Still, when you hear Seals going to work on dirty, soulful workouts like "Bad Blood," there's no doubt where this man's true talents lie. --Matthew Cooke
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Kenneth A. Knowles | 04/27/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"It's great to have a new Son Seals album. "Lettin' Go" finds our hero plus a new label and minus a leg since his last studio album, 1994's solid "Nothing But the Truth" on Alligator (nobody has earned the right to sing the blues more than Son Seals, with what he's been through the last few years). The liner notes indicate this is the most freedom Son has had in the studio; no one would have been happier than I to say this translated into his best album. That is not, however, the case. "Lettin' Go" certainly is his most diverse album, and at 14 songs and more than 70 minutes, his most generous. But the biggest departures, the old time rock 'n' roll of "Osceola Rock" and the somewhat country influenced "Rockin' and Rollin' Tonight" fall flat. Other, more subtle branching out works better (such as the partially acoustic "Dear Son"), but the best songs, such as "Give the Devil His Due," sound the most like old Son Seals. Son plays well and his voice is decent, but he would have been better served by a more dynamic rhythm section and tougher sound -- as usual for Telarc, the sound of this disc is superficially pristine but lacks warmth and punch. All in all, this is worth having, just do not expect revelations. Maybe next time Son will have an editor in his ear, pull back and play to his strengths."
How did Son get into my brain?
Rebekah Sue Harris | West Haven, CT USA | 10/11/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I ordered this CD to be delivered with the new Burke book ("Dead and Gone" by Andrew Vachss). Little did I know that the CD would be delivered after my boyfriend/almost fiancé/the first guy in 30 years who was ever nice to me/etc. would be caught cheating on me.I threw myself into the Blues.Son spoke from MY heart.THIS was my introduction to Son Seals."Let It Go" I played over and over. Sometimes, you just gotta let it go! It's upbeat beat pulled me out of my doldrums and its message got through to my brain. You listen to this CD enough, and if you've been lied to and cheated upon, you will embrace "Love Had A Breakdown" as you learn to love your freedom instead of hating it. (Does that make sense? I went from crying, to being able to welcome Son's "I no longer want you." That's a far cry from my earlier, "I can forgive you" -- and MUCH healthier.)I could pick through each song for you, but I think that each person who listens to it will get something different out of it, based on his/her own life experiences. I can honestly tell you that it made me feel better.I am not a blues connoisseur and indeed have only been listening to the blues for a few years (finding my choices based on amazon.com's recommendations to me, a registered user who buys Andrew Vachss books) -- so I can't critique this as a professional reviewer might. However, I'm a music fan going back as far as I can remember, and I can tell you that this is GREAT. The music wraps itself around the lyrics and the listener is given a package worth opening. Son's voice is the rich, deep green of a forest; it's cool and inviting and you can hear the wild animals in the underbrush even when you can't see them.Everyone whose heart has been broken should listen to this CD.Everyone who has a FRIEND whose heart has been broken should listen to this CD."
zak mucha | Brooklyn, NY | 05/20/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The blues has always suffered academic purists with limited parameters who have to define what true 'blues' are. (They know eveything about the music except how to enjoy it.) Son Seals continues to leap over the experts with his new album, Lettin' Go. Blues experts can concern themselves with where Sonny Boy Williamson bought strings and they miss the point that the blues is about emotions and carrying them over to the audience. (I just saw Son Seals play to a packed house and the room was charged... Standing ovations, calls from the crowd, and women dancing like they were getting paid good money. Like we hear it used to be back in the day.) So, this is the problem with reviewing a true bluesman. It's hard to describe how someone takes you with them by playing guitar and singing. No equivalent catalyst can be described here. Buy the album and listen to Son Seals prove it himself."