Organic. With his latest release as a solo artist, Birds Above Guitarland, guitarist/vocalist/songwriter/producer Pete Anderson provides enjoyment for all those interested in old-style blues coupled with hints of funk, rock, zydeco and a bit of country, all while playing with an unmatched Telecaster tone.
Anderson has an interesting story: he began working blue collar jobs early and honed his craft by night, before moving to LA with the dream of becoming a professional musician. He was Dwight Yoakam’s musical partner, and is known as one of the pioneers of the roots-rock and Americana genres.
Anderson’s tone is simply phenomenal: organic and rich with a hint of twang, his solos are exactly what you would expect from a seasoned blues veteran. His partner in crime on this record is keyboardist Michael Murphy, who seems equally at home taming the Wurlitzer and B3 as he does on acoustic piano. The production of the record is phenomenal; it sounds just how an old-time blues record should sound. A tight horn section is the final piece to a great sounding record.
“Outta’ the Fire” is the album opener, and it is simply a classic shuffle, exactly the type of opener you would expect to hear in a blues club. It is followed by one of the best tracks on the album, “36 Hour Day,” in which Anderson lays down some serious funk. “I Got Mine” is the slow blues on the album and a real treat for all who hear it. “Rock In My Shoe” is the most commercially viable song on the album, and a bonus track of “Rock in My Shoe” featuring Bekka Bramlett is a fantastic cut.
There’s nothing to really complain about with this album: the players are good, the performances inspired, the production fantastic, and the songs are well-written. That being said, none of the material is earth shattering or extremely unusual; it’s just rock-solid, hard-groovin’ blues.
The Review: 8/10
Can’t Miss Tracks
– Outta’ the Fire
– 36 Hour Day
– I Got Mine
– Rock In My Shoe
The Big Hit
– Rock In My Shoe
Review by Nik Rodewald