Kickin' it up a notch...sorry Emeril
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I first saw this band Wicked Mojos recently at the Bucks County Blues Picnic near Philadelphia. I'd never heard of them but was absolutely blown away by this group. It's good that I saw them live first because it gave me a great perspective on them when I bought the album. Mel really has a great harp style happening. I agree with a fellow reviewer about the presence of accordion tones in his harmonica. I'd never seen anybody get that type of sound with this instrument before. I thought the songs were very much suited to his singing, or is that the other way around? In any case, there is something unique happening with this band's sound. It's got a blues texture but is definitely not your run of the mill blues band. I don't hear as much cajun influence as others have said but there's a little of the New Orleans type of sound in here. I'd say they rock harder than a typical bayou band. Let's not forget to mention the guitar. I met the guy who looks to be the same person in the cd booklet who is listed as Jason Barker. This guy rips. Like most good musicians I've seen he takes it to another level live. His playing is great on the cd but I found it to be a lot more powerful at the concert. He was also very nice to take the time to talk about his influences and equipment with me. I'm real happy with this album and rate it as one of my favorite discs I've bought in the past couple of years. Bought it and got it signed by Mel and the band at the festival which makes it even more special to me. I think this band has a website but I can't remember the address."
Great roots and blues with a touch of Louisiana spice.
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Mel Melton and the Wicked Mojos have created an 11-course feast of gritty blues infused with the spicy stylings of Louisiana Zydeco and Cajun music. In his solo debut, Melton proves himself gifted as a singer, songwriter, and harmonica player."Swamp Slinger" boasts a stellar group of backing musicians, including renowned Alligator Records recording artist C.J. Chenier, and slide guitarist extraordinaire Sonny Landreth.This album showcases the inventive and versatile harmonica work of Melton. Unlike the numerous players on the scene today who flock to copy the Little Walter style of playing, Melton touches on these sounds while deeply exploring the more melodic sounds of Bayou roots music. There are several cuts where Melton's harp sounds like an accordion, something most players have no clue of how to accomplish. Couple this with the intense guitar work of Landreth and Jason Barker and you have a delicious combination.What makes "Swamp Slinger" such a satisfying listen is the stylistic variety of music presented here. The album's opening track "Cher Catin" is a great example. There is everything from New Orleans, to Paris, and Nashville in this one song alone. Funk is represented in the dirty "Backdoor Cajun Man" featuring a mean swamp groove by drummer Ed Butler. Melton displays a tender side with the cajun waltz "Tante-Na-Na," sung entirely in French. The blues-rock of "Chicago Train" suggests a collaboration between the Paul Butterfield Blues Band and early John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. Melton was an award-winning chef during a stint in the Windy City.Perhaps the highlight of this collection is Melton's own "French Quarter Rain." This somber offering, sounding almost like a melancholy death march, spotlights an emotional harmonica style backed by almost ethereal and atmospheric guitar.A truly unique and welcome twist on the blues. I'd love to see this band live."
I've worn this one out.
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a cool album. I've had it for about three months now after I saw an ad in a blues magazine for it.I'd say the singing is average but the harmonica is way happening. Love the way the whole band sounds. Certainly sounds swampy to me.Used this disc at a party and it seemed to make people drink and dance quite well. Come to think of it, I was drinking too and felt like I was transported down to the French Quarter with a few lovely ladies by my side. That's why this gets 5 stars.Great rhythm and grooves. Fabulous musicianship."