Provogue Records

Umpteenth live album from blues-rock star

Not content with releasing more than a dozen studio albums since the turn of the century, blues-rocker Joe Bonamassa has released even more live albums in the same period. This one comes in multiple packages – Blu-ray, vinyl, CD + DVD, booklets and so on (only the plain CD was available for review) but, even for the diehard fan, is it really an essential purchase? The answer, of course, is no.

Bonamassa tends to polarise opinion. Fans of earthy, rural, acoustic blues have no time for him at all, viewing him as bombastic, overly commercial, slick and soulless. But his fans, of whom he has bucketloads, rave about his guitar playing, his feel for the blues and his showmanship. You pays your money (and you do get a lot for not very much here, even a couple of new songs) and you takes your choice. This album will not change the view of either camp, but even if you’re in the latter it’s hard to see what a fourteenth live album will give you that you haven’t already got.

Half the album is taken from his most recent studio outing, 2014’s DIFFERENT SHADES OF BLUE, then there’s the two new songs and oddments from elsewhere and the total clocks in at 57 minutes (13 songs). If blues-rock is your thing you could do a lot worse but if you’re a fan you’ll have all but the newbies already. Jeremy Searle

Its delicacy makes it a strong choice to close the album…

Scott Wood Band UPSURGE, reviewed by Kasey Stone

Joe Bonamassa LIVE AT RADIO CITY HALL Photo Gallery

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