Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

JEFF BECK

ROCK 'N' ROLL PARTY

2011-03-07

Rock guitarist Jeff Beck pays tribute to one of his inspirations, the legendary Les Paul, on this 20 song live disc. Joined by the likes of Imelda May, Brian Setzer, Gary U.S. Bonds, Darrel Higham, Trombone Shorty and Blue Lou Marini, Beck lets fly with high energy Rockabilly, "Double Talkin’ Baby" and early rock and roll, "The Train Kept A Rollin’", "Peter Gunn", "Rocking Is Our Business", "Twenty Flight Rock" and "New Orleans". He also slows things way down and gets torchy (and occasionally lounge lizardfish!) with Imelda May on duets that Paul cut with Mary Ford including "Cry Me a River", "I’m a Fool To Care", "The World is Waiting for the Sunrise", "Mockin’ Bird Hill" and "Vaya Con Dios". As good of a torch singer as she is, May really shines when she unleashes rocking vocals on another Paul/Ford classic, "How High the Moon" and just plain rips it up on "Walking in the Sand". Post war boogie finds its way into the mix on "Sitting On top of the World" and "Bye Bye Blues" to similar great effect. Throughout, Beck throws in deft fills and jazzy runs that make it real clear that his time in the woodshed listening to Les Paul work his magic was well spent. Like so much of Paul’s work, Beck’s playing on much of this release is so subtle and tasteful that it’s easy to miss the immense skill required to pull such great sounds out of six strings- that is until he gets to instrumentals such as "Apache" and "Sleepwalk" where his guitar work is front and center. While the torchy part of this disc won’t appeal to everyone, the rocking numbers will kick start any party and all of the tunes would surely make Les Paul proud with their skillful performance. Smitty

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