Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

TAB BENOIT

MEDICINE

2011-06-07

Joined by such first call New Orleans based musicians as Anders Osborne on guitar, Ivan Neville on Hammond B3 and Michael Doucet on Fiddle, Louisiana guitarist Tab Benoit checks in here with 11 original tunes that showcase not only his prowess on guitar but his sharp eye for detail. On "Long Lonely Bayou" he laments his inability to catch a break in matters of both love and luck over a musical backdrop that has a traditional Cajun feel compliments of Doucet’s fiddle work. "In It to Win It" has a slow, stewing groove that propels Benoit’s tale of wanderlust and redemption as the prodigal son returns. "Mudboat Melissa" is an upbeat rocker that is more fun than the fate that awaits the unlucky soul that gets caught by troublesome Melissa. The title track features a guitar duel by Benoit and Osborne over a thumping bass and drum groove that adds an evil edge to the tale about seeking help through a fix that will either kill or cure you. Benoit’s activism in support of saving Louisiana’s embattled bayous and coastline is front and center in "A Whole Lotta Soul" where he suggests that those who don’t think the loss of the bayous is a big deal will change their tune when he demolishes their property in the same way the bayous have been destroyed in the name of progress. While many of the tracks simmer rather than burn, "Come and Get It" is a positively buoyant party track about ripping loose and letting the consequences catch up tomorrow. The Augie Myer’s penned "Can’t You See" hits a similar fun groove with Doucet’s fiddle work luring you to the dance floor. The presence of Anders Osborne is felt all over this disc with his guitar work continually pushing Benoit to stretch himself and his co-writing credits adding a bit more darkness to the mix than found on prior releases. Smitty

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

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