Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

Rick "LA" Holmstrom

Late in the Night

2007-05-24

After tearing up the band stand from coast to coast during his long stint as the guitarist for Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers, Rick Holmstrom embarked on a solo career that has given him the chance to stretch in directions only hinted at in the context of that band’s sound. His 2002 release, Hydraulic Groove, confounded some blues fans with its tape loops and sonic experiments but was hailed by many as the most interesting thing to hit the blues racks in some time. This release is a return to more traditional fare. Playing in a stripped down trio format, Holmstrom visits familiar T-Bone Walker style territory on the string scorching instrumental "Peculiar Hop" and on the rip roaring "On the Vine" which could have dropped straight off a Mighty Flyers disc. From there he moves on to everything from muscular rock, "Tutwiler", to atmospheric Doors-like groovers, "77 Red V8", to loping shuffles, "Better Way", to moody instrumentals straight from a gritty Western, "Descanso" and a track that channels Warren Zevon, "Hey Johnny". He even takes a shot at Dylan’s oft covered classic "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" and reinvents it with Jeff Turmes’ wailing saxophone doing the heavy lifting. While he isn’t the strongest vocalist in the world he has improved considerably over the years and sounds most comfortable when he follows the lead of fellow West Coast artist, James Harman, and semi-talks his way through tunes as on "Dig Myself a Hole". Overall, while straight blues are hard to come by here, this is an inventive, fun disc that reaffirms Holmstrom’s decision to strike out on his own. Smitty

More reviews tagged #Blues

  • reviewed 03/2017

    ELVIN BISHOP
    ELVIN BISHOP'S BIG FUN TRIO

  • reviewed 01/2013

    ANDERS OSBORNE
    Three Free Amigos

  • reviewed 05/2009

    THE MYSTIX
    Down to the Shore

  • reviewed 03/2007

    Bob Margolin
    In North Carolina

  • reviewed 04/2017

    COCO MONTOYA
    HARD TRUTH

  • reviewed 12/2015

    Jonn Del Toro Richardson
    Tengo Blues

Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

The opinions expressed in these reviews are those of the individual volunteers that submitted the article and do not necessarily reflect the views of WYCE or GRCMC; nor its staff, donors, or affiliates.