Mitch Kashmar - West Coast Toast

West Coast Toast
Delta Groove Music

Mitch Kashmar - West Coast ToastMitch Kashmar delves deeply into the sound of West Coast blues with his latest release West Coast Toast — and it’s something that he should be quite familiar with as he has been a longtime mainstay on that scene from his early days with The Pontiax to his current position atop the blues community in Portland, Oregon. For this disc, however, he returns to Southern California and is joined by an all-star cast of familiar names and lays down some of the most dynamic harmonica to be heard from anyone, anywhere.

Kashmar went into the studio and brought guitarist extraordinaire Junior Watson, keyboard master Fred Kaplan and bassist Bill Stuve, all whom he states he met back in 1985 while working on a project with the late William Clarke. On drums, he went to Bay Area skin-man Marty Dodson, who has worked endlessly with Mark Hummel.  Kashmar himself is stellar with his work on both diatonic and chromatic harps. All of these are cats along with Kashmar know the West Coast blues sound like the back of their hands. They should as among them they’ve recorded some of the most important music ever to come out of California with a wide variety of bands

This is Kashmar’s fifth discs on the Delta Groove label, including a live album and re-release of an album from The Pontiax. The album opens with a burnin’ instrumental track, ”East Of 82nd Street,” a reference to the section of Southeast Portland where he now lives. It sets the pace for the following selections on this outstanding recording and is the first of four brilliant instrumentals offered (“Mood Indica,” “Makin’ Bacon,” and “Canoodlin’” are the others). Those harmonica-fueld numbers, as well as the entire recording, showcases the Chicago sound that developed into the West Coast sound and is a tribute to the master who helped create it on the Mississippi saxophone, George “Harmonica” Smith. Smith was a huge influence on just about every harp player out west, including the likes of the late William Clarke, Rod Piazza, Kim Wilson, and of course, Mitch Kashmar.

Kashmar takes on a social stance as he questions just how much money are we going to use in “The Petroleum Blues. And he gives another nod to his adopted home of Portland in “My Lil’ Stumptown Shack,” letting all of his Southern Californian pals know that he ain’t never coming back.

He also tackles a handful of covers that he brings out perfectly. They include Sonny Boy Williamson’s “Alcohol Blues,” Billy Boy Arnold’s “Don’t Stay Out All Night,” Willie Dixon’s “Too Many Cooks,” and the Rudy Toombs/Henry Glover piece “Young Girl.”

What you have with West Coast Toast is a keeper of a recording that you’re going to want to place next to all your favorites. It’ll grow consistently on you with each listen and you’ll easily feel it belongs among the best go-to discs in your collection. Hands down, Mitch Kashmar has created a remarkable album that is sure to stand the test of time.

Total Time: 48:35

East Of 82nd Street / Too Many Cooks / Young Girl / The Petroleum Blues / Mood Indica / Don’t Stay Out All Night / My Lil’ Stumptown Shack / Makin’ Bacon / Alcohol Blues / Love Grows Cold / Canoodlin’

Terry Robb - Cool On The Bloom Entered Into Best Self-Produced CD Competition

Cool On The BloomTerry Robb - Cool On The Bloom
NiaSounds

Terry Robb without question is one of the finest guitarists playing the blues (or any other form of music for that matter) today. Adept at electric and acoustic guitars, he displays lightning quick, crisp flair on his instrument that is right on the money every time. His true forte is on acoustic and he is the master of both fingerpicking and bottleneck styles with expert original and innovative readings of Delta blues, rags, spirituals, and whatever else he puts his mind too musically.

Robb’s latest release, Cool On The Bloom, finds him on a new Portland-based label, NiaSounds. It is mostly a solo outing with only two vocal tracks. Terry Robb possesses the ability to completely captivate an audience without the need for any sidemen as he displays on seven numbers on the disc. But when he is joined by the likes of Albert Reda or Dave Kahl on bass, Jeff Minnick or Dennis Carter on drums, and guitar master Doug Smith, the music rises again to another level. Alone or accompanied, Terry Robb knows how to grab your ears and give you an intensely pleasurable listening experience.

All of the tracks on Cool On The Bloom are sensational examples of Robb’s skills. Opening with a light-hearted, sprightly rag titled “Soc Hop” that is surely bound to get your toes tapping right off the bat. The piece shows off Robb’s incredible dexterity at finger-picking. “Christmas in Istanbul” was first released on the O, Christmas Three album from the Acoustic Guitar Summit. Here he showcases some very classic approaches on this swinging number with Middle Eastern flavor, joined by one of his Acoustic Guitar Summit partners Doug Smith. Smith also accompanies Robb on two other songs on the album, “Watermelon Eye Patch Groove” and a beautifully-done instrumental take on The Turtles’ “You Showed Me.” “So Glad” and the cover of Rube Lacey’s “Ham Hound Crave” are the only two vocal numbers, and both are presented with a nice jovial approach, the latter kind of makes me hungry with all the mention of Southern food. “Late Night Kahl” is a jazzier offering, and “Honey One” has a moody feeling behind it; both are prime examples of just how diverse the music from Robb can be.

If I had to pick out one stand-out track (which is essentially impossible when everything here is so unbelievable!), it just might be the bottleneck slide work on “”Holy Spirit, Father And Son.” This song sounds like Robb just stepped from behind the sun, jumped over the levee, crossed the cotton fields and sat down on the porch at the local juke with his guitar. Pour the sweet tea, this is as down home as you can get people!

Cool On The Bloom is an exceptional presentation of Terry Robb that shows you just how much he is as one with his guitar, whether using vocals or not. When you have the talent to use your instrument as your voice as Robb does, it is completely exhilarating and often mind-blowing. This album offers all of that and more. Repeated listens will become mandatory; you won’t be able to avoid it.

Total Time: 39:30

Soc Hop / Cool On The Bloom / Christmas In Istanbul / Watermelon Eye Patch Groove / So Glad / Soggy Foot Rag / You Showed Me / Holy Spirit, Father And Son / Ham Hound Crave / Late Night Kahl / Honey One / Grama Jean

Thunder Brothers CD Cover

Eponymous EP
Self produced

Thunder Brothers CD CoverThe Thunder Brothers eponymously titled debut recording is a four song EP chock full of powerful, driving rocking blues. Made up of four of Portland’s most talented and respected musicians, they each have a resume that could fill a warehouse with their historical contributions to Portland’s music scene and beyond. And on this disc these guys don’t just play music, they bring it alive. They’ve unleashed a maelstrom of musical fury that holds nothing back and consumes you with a desire to hear more and more.

The Thunder Brothers are made up of guitarists Michael Quinby and Doug Rowell, with the super pulsating rhythm section of bassist Timmer Blakely and drummer Edwin Coleman III. They play off one another to perfection and you can easily catch the individual contributions by the players on every track; no one overplays his hand, a true sign of a cohesive unit and working outfit.

Quinby and Rowell each created two of the four tracks. They are filled with expressive and fluid lyrics that are ear-catching and memorable, with no let-down from one song leading into the next. You’re hooked right off the bat with the opening guitar riff on “You Scare Me” and pretty quickly find yourself singing along on the chorus. That is followed up by Rowell telling you that if you’re going to hurt me, “Hurt Me Good” and then intensifying his statement with a blistering guitar solo that stresses the point, letting you know that he’ll be coming back for more.  Quinby then returns with a tale of the woman he is attracted to whose skin is like “Molasses” and eyes as black as night and she’s a bit on the wild side. He can’t understand what she sees in him, but he is definitely going to stick around and see. Rowell then returns with the closing number, “Turn and Walk Away,” that opens with fire on his instrument’s strings, rattling the senses with sizzling and ferociousness guitar playing throughout. The full band is pouring their all into the spirit of the song and you’re taken on a rocking ride that just keeps getting better the further into the song you go. It’ll leave you breathless by the end and asking why there isn’t more!

If power blues is something you enjoy, this is definitely a recording you don’t want to pass up. Thunder Brothers is without doubt an appropriate name for this band, they’re bringing out all of the full force of a thunder storm and then some. Play this one loud and be prepared to have your senses stimulated on all fronts. BOOM! This one hits it right!

Total Time: 18:02

You Scare Me / Hurt Me Good / Molasses / Turn And Walk Away

Not Quite Legal
Revved Up Records

Chase Walker Band CD Not Quite LegalThe Chase Walker Band’s second release, Not Quite Legal, is a great indication that these teen-aged musicians were not just another flash in the pan group of youngsters trying their hand at the blues. They really mean their place in the genre and their rocking it big time with their approach, while showing that they’re still growing as a band, too. It is kind of scary just how good these kids are, as songwriters as well as musicians.

Band leader Chase Walker is already quite an accomplished guitarist. He also has plenty of savvy and sass as a songwriter and vocalist. There is a bit of adult language that crops up occasionally in a couple numbers, “Cold Hearted” and “Don’t F It Up” and its earned the release a parental advisory warning label, but even these songs display a creative musical drive that belies the band member’s ages.

Aside from Walker, the band features drummer Matt Fyke and bassist Randon Davitt, who contributes his own songwriting skills and vocals on the track “Changed.” Backing vocals from Jade Bennet-Mateo and April Stephenson also add exceptional soulful contributions to the band’s sound.

Enjoyable covers of Toots & The Maytall’s ska piece “54-46” and a rootsy version of The Wood Brothers’ “Honey Jar” enhance the musical diversity of the album. Then there is “Red House”; this Jimi Hendrix number may make many people say, “Oh boy, that old song? Everybody and their mother has done that one. Here we go again.” But rest assured, this is a superbly rendered take of the song, starting out with Walker working with solid resonator guitar playing that builds up the drive as the band joins in. It shows a lot of respect to Hendrix’ tradition without sounding like every other band who has covered the song. And the distorted vocals brings it all home. Well done!

The band throws in a hidden track at the end of the disc titled “Yabba Dabba” that really shows off the trio working in a jam feeling. They may be young, but they’ve been working together enough to grab each others’ feel and approach to the music. And it just keeps getting better. Keep your eye on the Chase Walker Band, these kids have got it going on and bring across on both recording and in live settings! Wow!

Total Time: 49:33

Done Loving You / Red House / The Walk / New State Of Mind / I Warned You / Cold Hearted / Don’t F It Up / 54-46 / Changed / It’ll Pass / Honey Jar / Living On Thin Ice

Live in ’67 — Volume Two
Forty Below Records
By Randy Murphy

john mayall cd coverLast summer, I reviewed John Mayall’s new album chronicling a series of live dates in various London clubs during the spring of 1967. Now, Mayall and his pals at Forty Below Records have released, on honest-to-goodness vinyl no less, the next volume of these remarkable recordings.

To review how these historical performances came to light: Tom Huissen, a 16-year-old Dutch blues devotee, shadowed Mayall and this particular edition of The Bluesbreakers — Mayall on organ and vocals, John McVie on bass, Peter Green on guitar and vocals, and Mick Fleetwood on drums (and in this album, R&B singer Ronnie Jones sitting in on “Double Trouble”), around London during April and May of 1967 while toting his single-channel, reel-to-reel tape deck. Thankfully, Huissen captured on these priceless tapes a small taste of the nascent blues scene of mid-sixties Britain.

Just as the first release, these recordings are not close to high-fidelity, though to my ears this second volume on vinyl sounds a bit warmer than the first volume on CD — besides, listening to this music on a turntable, well, just feels right.

The performances Huissen captured here are invigorating and potent. While there’re no clunkers in the batch, there are a couple of soul-stirring highlights. The first cut, Mayall’s “Tears In My Eyes” showcases Peter Green’s ability to shift his guitar playing flawlessly from soulful into combustible in just a few short bars. “Greeny” a full-tilt, straight-ahead boogie number is another highlight, as is John McVie’s bass solo on “Chicago Line.”

But again, the whole album is terrific and it’s difficult to single out one or two tracks for recognition. It would also be quite difficult to underestimate the value of these recordings, and the only thing that overshadows their historical importance and cultural legacy is their musicality. Besides, how can blues tunes recorded in London’s Marquee Club or the Ram Jam in 1967 possibly go wrong?

So, my advice is to buy these albums, spend a few pleasant days listening to them, and then go see Mayall live at the Aladdin on November 7.

1:13:08

Tears In My Eyes / Your Funeral And My Trial / So Many Roads / Bye Bye Bird / Please Don’t Tell / Sweet Little Angel / Talk To your Daughter / Bad Boy / Stormy Monday / Greeny / Ridin’ On The L&N / Chicago Line / Double Trouble.

 

Not Quite Legal
Revved Up Records

chase-walker-band-cd-coverThe Chase Walker Band’s second release, Not Quite Legal, is a great indication that these teen-aged musicians were not just another flash in the pan group of youngsters trying their hand at the blues. They really mean their place in the genre and their rocking it big time with their approach, while showing that they’re still growing as a band, too. It is kind of scary just how good these kids are, as songwriters as well as musicians.

Band leader Chase Walker is already quite an accomplished guitarist. He also has plenty of savvy and sass as a songwriter and vocalist. There is a bit of adult language that crops up occasionally in a couple numbers, “Cold Hearted” and “Don’t F It Up” and its earned the release a parental advisory warning label, but even these songs display a creative musical drive that belies the band member’s ages.

Aside from Walker, the band features drummer Matt Fyke and bassist Randon Davitt, who contributes his own songwriting skills and vocals on the track “Changed.” Backing vocals from Jade Bennet-Mateo and April Stephenson also add exceptional soulful contributions to the band’s sound.

Enjoyable covers of Toots & The Maytall’s ska piece “54-46” and a rootsy version of The Wood Brothers’ “Honey Jar” enhance the musical diversity of the album. Then there is “Red House”; this Jimi Hendrix number may make many people say, “Oh boy, that old song? Everybody and their mother has done that one. Here we go again.” But rest assured, this is a superbly rendered take of the song, starting out with Walker working with solid resonator guitar playing that builds up the drive as the band joins in. It shows a lot of respect to Hendrix’ tradition without sounding like every other band who has covered the song. And the distorted vocals brings it all home. Well done!

The band throws in a hidden track at the end of the disc titled “Yabba Dabba” that really shows off the trio working in a jam feeling. They may be young, but they’ve been working together enough to grab each others’ feel and approach to the music. And it just keeps getting better. Keep your eye on the Chase Walker Band, these kids have got it going on and bring across on both recording and in live settings! Wow!

Total Time: 49:33

Done Loving You / Red House / The Walk / New State Of Mind / I Warned You / Cold Hearted / Don’t F It Up / 54-46 / Changed / It’ll Pass / Honey Jar / Living On Thin Ice

Introducing John Blues Boyd: The Real Deal
Little Village Foundation

john-blues-boyd-cd-coverIf you listen to just one new artist this year, you should direct your attention to John Blues Boyd. At the age of 71 he has released his debut disc with the urging and guidance of the Little Village Foundation.  Boyd claims that he always had a feeling for the blues, but life had to come first, making ends meet to cover his expenses. It wasn’t until his wife of 49 years, Dona Mae, passed away in 2014 after an extended illness, that Boyd was finally able to look into the blues — not only as a means of coping with his loss, but as a profession.

The album, appropriately titled Introducing John Blues Boyd: The Real Deal, was recorded in Kid Andersen’s Greaseland Studios in San Jose. There is a lot of autobiography behind the songs presented here. The album opens with a bit of retrospective on Boyd’s life, “I Am The Real Deal,” and the closing piece “John, The Blues Is Calling You” brings the events of his life up to date. The love for his wife and her suffering is documented in three tunes, “I’m So Weak Right Now,” “When Your Eyes Met Mine” and “Screaming In The Night.” A fourth number, written by Kid Andersen and Rick Estrin, is yet another tribute to her, titled “Dona Mae.” Of the songs included on the album, all but three were penned by Boyd. The only exceptions (aside from the already mentioned “Dona Mae”) were written by Rick Estrin, including an outstanding take on Estrin’s humorous “That’s Big!”

Every track on the album is pure blues that resonates with every note. The Real Deal is just that; blues played at its absolute best in traditional electric Chicago or Delta fashion. And having spent a great deal of his life living in Mississippi, the exposure was there. Not to mention his cousin was the late legendary bluesman Eddie Boyd.

Being released by Little Village Foundation, Boyd was accompanied in the studio by a gathering of the talented musicians that have become go-to artists for the group. They include such well-known blues greats as label leader Jim Pugh, Rick Estrin, Kid Andersen, Aki Kumar, Big Jon Atkinson, June Core, Terry Hanck, D’Mar Martin, Frankie Ramos, and Robert Welsh to name just a handful. Bringing John Blues Boyd into the studio is another prime example of the label’s drive to bring lesser known or overlooked musicians to the forefront. And we should all be happy that John Blues Boyd now has music that we can all hear! And from the sounds of it, we should be hearing a great deal more from this new 71-year-old artist as he has claimed in a recent article that he has already recorded 52 songs and has another 60 ready to lay down. This is without doubt, one of the best blues releases of the year! And though the term has been overused, mostly for people undeserving, John Blues Boyd truly is “The Real Deal.”

Total Time: 45:33

I Am The Real Deal / You Will Discover / I’m Like A Stranger To You / That’s Big! / The Smoking Pig / That Certain Boy / Dona Mae / I’m So Weak Right Now / When Your Eyes Met Mine / Screaming In The Night / (Have You Ever Been To) Marvin Gardens / Be Careful With Your Love / John, The Blues Is Calling You

Texas Blues Voices
Appaloosa Records

fabrizio-poggi-cd-coverTexas has long been fertile ground for outstanding blues musicians. It has carved a tremendous niche in the history of the genre, stretching back to Blind Lemon Jefferson, Blind Willie Johnson, and Lightnin’ Hopkins. It’s still serving as a birthplace for so many newer artists, too. So it was only natural that Italian bluesman Fabrizio Poggi has held a life-long goal to perform and record with the musicians of the Lone Star State.

Poggi is a Blues Music Award nominated harmonica player, with twenty recordings and four books under his belt. He has collaborated with quite a number of great musicians over the years, including the likes of Ronnie Earl, Sonny Landreth, Charlie Musselwhite, Marcia Ball, and Otis Taylor to name but a few. So it should be no surprise that making his dream come true of working with some of Texas best saw some of its favorite sons and daughters jumping at the chance — the result is Poggi’s newest release, Texas Blues Voices.

Heading down to Austin and working with famed Grammy winning engineer Stuart Sullivan, Poggi rounded up  a handful of the city’s best musicians to work as his core band: guitarists Bobby Mack and Joe Forlini, keyboardist Cole El-Saleh, and the rhythm section of bassist Donnie Price and drummer Dony Winn. The dream team of guests that he pulled into the mix are all over the top, offering a selection of covers and a few songs written by the artists performing.

Stand-out numbers on the disc would have to include Ruthie Foster singing Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee’s “Walk On,” Lavelle White working her song “Mississippi, My Home” with Carolyn Wonderland and Bobby Mack inserting terrific guitar solos, Shelley King’s is sensational on her piece “Welcome Home,” and Guy Forsythe’s resonator guitar playing on the traditional “Run On.” All of the performances are outstanding. Other musicians appearing are Mike Zito, Mike Cross and WC Clark. And Fabrizio Poggi blows some dynamic harmonica throughout.

If you have not been exposed to Fabrizio Poggi before, this is a superb disc to get your introduction. Filled with amazing playing by everybody in the mix. And it’s got a nice history of Texas blues going on, too. Texas Blues Voices is definitely something to put on your list to take a listen to. You won’t be sorry.

Total Time: 47:09

Nobody’s Fault But Mine / Walk On / Forty Days And Forty Nights / Rough Edges / Mississippi, My Home / Neighbor Neighbor / Many In Body / Welcome Home / Wishin’ Well / Run On

Blues Immigrant
Tongue ‘N Groove Records

matthew-skoller-cd-coverChicago-based harmonica ace Matthew Skoller is back with his fifth release. It’s fitting for a musician who has been laying down some of the sharpest harp music in The Windy City for nearly three decades, working alongside the city’s greats like Junior Wells, Lurrie Bell, John Primer, Koko Taylor, The Kinsey Report, that he has brought many of his best friends with him to create a masterful recording, Blues Immigrant, including guitarists Carlos Johnson and Eddie Taylor Jr. and keyboard professor Johnny Iguana.

Skoller is not afraid to address social issues in his music, something that has never been far from most blues music since the genre first took roots well over one hundred years ago. He sadly talks about the disappearance of the mom and pop businesses that made this country great in the number “Big Box Store Blues.” And he tackles how corporate greed is over-powering consumerism and life in general with “Story Of Greed.” The title track, “Blues Immigrant,” offers an autobiographical account of Skoller’s life beginning with his grandparents arrival in the country in 1922. But sometimes he thinks that regardless of just how much history has gone by and the troubles he’s seen, he still feels that he needs a green card to reside — has he paid enough dues, or does he need a green card to play the blues?

A welcome addition to the album is Skoller performing the Blues Music Award nominated song that he wrote for Lurrie Bell, “The Devil Ain’t Got No Music.” His presentation is sleek and filled with his signature vocals and burning harmonica.

Most of the tunes on the disc were written as part of Skoller’s songwriting partnership with Vincent Bucher, who also co-produced the album. But there are some great cover tracks included, too. Among those is a terrific take on Haskell “Cool Papa” Sadler’s “747,” perhaps best known by Joe Louis Walker’s version of the song. Luther “Snake Boy” Johnson’s “Get Down To The Nitty Gritty” and Papa Lightfoot’s classic instrumental “Blue Lights” both shine highly.

Skoller truly strikes home with his satirical piece “Only In The Blues.” It’s a sad vision, but quite true. Where but the blues can you find “His girlfriend is his manager / His brother books the gigs / Ex ol’ lady does the website / And supports his only kid / Thinks it’s only temporary / And he calls ‘payin’ dues’ / It’s a funky situation found only in the blues.” Or how about the performer being called the real deal and legend who out-sells BB King and Buddy Guy, despite the face that he’s only nine years old. Come to think about, this probably is more factual than satire.

Matthew Skoller continues to prove with every release he puts out and every performance he plays, he is one of Chicago’s true modern masters of the blues. And yes he has paid his dues. This is exactly the type of music you expect to hear when you think about Chicago blues. And it is amongst the very best to be found!

Total Time: 43:10

Big Box Store Blues / The Devil Ain’t Got No Music / Blues Immigrant / Only In The Blues / Tear Collector / Story Of Greed / 747 / Organ Mouth / My Get It Done Woman / Get Down To The Nitty Gritty / Blue Lights

 

Hard Times, Bad Decisions
JayRay Records

Lisa Mann CD coverWhatever recipe Lisa Mann is currently using to cook her albums, I hope that she has it written down, because they’re definitely a gourmet taste. Her latest release, Hard Times, Bad Decisions, is chock-full of that same winning flavor that has seen her star rise onto an international level, reaping all kinds of accolades and two consecutive Blues Music Awards.

There is a great cast of players working with Lisa on the disc. Aside from Her Really Good Band mates Jason JT Thomas on guitar, Michael Ballash on drums and Brian Harris on keys, she is joined by Portland-based friends Andy Stokes, Rae Gordon, Ben Rice, Sonny Hess, Louis Pain, Dave Melyan, Renato Caranto, Steve Kerin, Chris Mercer, Joe McCarthy, and Stan Bock. That is an all-star collection indeed, but there are also a couple of big-time out-of-towners included, too, Mannish Boys guitarist Kirk Fletcher and Black Sabbath drummer Vinny Appice.

There’s so much to like about this album. She is a vocalist who stands among the very best anywhere. And Lisa writes songs that range in multiple directions of emotion. She reflects on how choices for our lives are not always the best decisions made in the opening track “Hard Times, Bad Decisions.” “Two Halves Of One Broken Heart” is extremely touching in her duet with soul master Andy Stokes. This one grabs at your heart with its slower bluesy approach. “Doghouse” is a lot of fun as she tells her other half that he’s sleeping in the doghouse tonight and he ain’t getting any bone. And talking about fun on this song, how about Rae Gordon offering her vocals to the background, and throwing in a few of her own trademark dog barks, too. A New Orleans sound is all over “Ain’t Nunna Your Business” with Steve Kerin adding authentic Louisiana keyboards to the horn backing of Mercer, McCarthy and Bock.

There are four covers on the disc that Mann truly finds the right direction for. In particular, Portland’s own Mary Kadderly’s jazzy, bouncing number “I Go Zoom” features the guitar fire of pal Sonny Hess and the terrific piano playing of Alex Shakeri, with Lisa showcasing a nice bass solo that truly details why she is a two-time BMA recipient for her bass work. Also, Mann gives a beautiful take on Don Robertson and Jack Rollins’ 1953 piece “I Don’t Hurt Anymore” perhaps best known as sung by Dinah Washington, that has also seen covers by Hank Snow and Johnny Cash. Lisa’s take matches right alongside any of those renditions.

The album closes with a deeply haunting pace as Ben Rice dishes out a very swampy resonator guitar and Vinny Appice handles the drums superbly as expected alongside a moody bass line from Mann on “Judge A Man Forever.” This takes the album pretty much full circle, where past decisions have once again played a strong part in life. The hopes here are that one’s life is not going to be forever marred because of bad choice that happened early on. It is a strong and emotive number to close out a sensational album.

One thing that you can always count on with Lisa Mann, you’re going to be taken on a trip with lots of turns and excitement in her music. It just keeps getting better and more thrilling not just with every song on this album, but every album she creates, too. Don’t let it stop. Knowing Lisa, it’s just going to keep on rolling. Expect it!

Total Time: 45:30

Hard Times, Bad Decisions / Two Halves Of one Broken Heart / Certain Kinda Man / I Go Zoom /  Doghouse / I Don’t Hurt Anymore / Ain’t Nunna Yo Bizness / My Father’s House / You Need A Woman / Play It All The Way / I Love You All The Time / Judge A Man Forever