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As you may know, I am a massive fan of Joe Bonamassa and have over the past few months reviewed many of his solo albums and also his work in the American-British Rock Supergroup known as Black Country Communion. Here is the latest review in my Joe Bonamassa series and it's his latest release which was released earlier this year. Interestingly it's the fourth yearly release in a row from Joe Bonamassa who is one of the most prolific artists around at the moment having released a total of 14 studio albums including the work in Black Country Communion and also his duets album with Beth Hart which was released in 2011 to great success and acclaim.
**Driving Towards The Daylight**
Driving Towards the Daylight is Joe Bonamassa's eleventh solo studio album and is an album that draws influences from the past to create a Blues Rock album that covers several well known tracks with also a few new originals. The album is the seventh collaboration with Kevin Shirley on Production. The album was recorded in three studios. These were The Palms, Las Vegas, NV; The Village Recorder, Los Angeles, & finally The Cave, Malibu, CA. The album which was released on 22nd May 2012 was extremely well received by Music critics.
1.) Dislocated Boy
This is an excellent track which opens the album well, It's sound is reminiscent of the sound on the album "Dust Bowl" and has a good flow with some great melodies and hooks. The song is about moving around and not finding your own place you feel at home. The track has some excellent breakdown parts which slow the song well and then the guitar solo helps build the rest of the track wonderfully well. Some of the guitar work on the track is exemplary as is much of the album too.
2.) Stones in my Passway
This track was originally written & recorded by Blues Pioneer Robert Johnson, It's an excellent shuffling slice of Blues. This is one of only three tracks on the album that is under four minutes long but it certainly gets enough in. The track is not quite as instant as some of the other tracks on the album are but it has some great honky tonk Piano parts and a nice catchy feel which works rather well. This is an excellent cover version of one of Robert Johnson's lesser known tracks.
3.) Driving Towards The Daylight
I have seen Joe Bonamassa in Concert twice now and on the second occassion he performed this track as he talked about the then upcoming new album. This is a really lovely ballad which showcases his vocals to great effect. This is an excellent ballad which builds wonderfully and is up there with the best tracks on the album, I love the way the song builds as the music gets heavier and then the guitar break comes in to lead to the fine solos which really complete the song wonderfully well.
4.) Who's Been Talking
This track is a cover of a Howlin Wolf track and features a spoken intro from the original with Wolf talking about the sound he wanted in the track. This is an excellent up tempo track which has a great vibrancy to it and is a real toe tapper. The track is the second shortest on the album but has more than enough time to get across it's value. It's one of the catchiest tracks on the album and works really well. Joe's vocals are excellent here and the guitar work is great too, particularly towards the end when he lets loose.
5.) I Got All You Need
This track opens with a catchy guitar riff and then the shuffling drums and bass hooks come in to create a catchy and vibrant sound. This track was originally recorded by Koko Taylor and works rather well. Joe's vocals are expressive and his guitar playing very fluid. There's some excellent organ work on tap and this is a very enjoyable listen with a lovely progression which takes the track to the next level. It's an excellent track and features some fine guitar work.
6.) A Place In My Heart
This track was originally recorded by Bernie Madsen but for me it has more than a hint of Gary Moore. This is a lovely Blues track with intimate vocals which are superbly emotive and the guitar playing is also superb. I love the way the song develops and Joe's vocals become more expressive and the horn section comes in to prepare the sound for the outstanding guitar work which just completes the song in a wonderful way. Just a brilliant couple of solos here.
7.) Lonely Town Lonely Street
This is an interesting cover, It was originally recorded by Bill Withers but on this version Joe Bonamassa performs a dynamic Blues Rock sound which works extremely well. The drums are an excellent feature of the track and build the song really well in each part. Joe's vocals are fluid and the guitar riffs and catchy and so melodic. I love the way this one builds too and when the guitar solos come in to complete the song you just have to admire the great sound.
8.) Heavenly Soul
This is one of the three originals on the album and is a lovely meandering ballad with crashing drums and a nice vocal harmony. It's a while before the guitar kicks in properly but when it does it works extremely well. The sound is rather catchy and Joe's vocals work well too. This is another very melodic and catchy track which compliments the other musicians and of course demonstrates Joe Bonamassa's impeccable guitar work to great effect.
9.) New Coat Of Paint
This track opens with some punchy drumming with nice percussion and a fantastic organ sound. The track was originally recorded by Tom Waits but Joe Bonamassa really takes this version onto another level with a lovely build up which sounds excellent and his expressive vocals work well with the guitar work and the melodies from the organ and bass. I'm not a fan of Tom Waits but I certainly love this version by Joe Bonamassa. There's Some superb guitar work throughout.
10.) Somewhere Trouble Don't Go
This is an excellent track which has vibrant crashing drums and a nice subtle bass hook, Joe's guitar work has an old school sound brought into the present day. This is an excellent shuffling track which was originally recorded by Buddy Miller who also wrote the song. I'm not all that aware of the original but this version from Joe Bonamassa is certainly excellent and has some great guitar work which you would expect from Joe Bonamassa.
11.) Too Much Ain't Enough Love (w/ Jimmy Barnes)
This is a fabulous reworking of the original which actually features the original vocalist from the track. Jimmy Barnes shows he's still in fine voice. This is a real contender for best track on the album and the combination of Jimmy's strong vocals and Joe Bonamassa's amazing guitar work is just perfect. This reminds me a lot of the style of the material in Black Country Communion with Glenn Hughes as another powerful vocalist. This is a truly outstanding song which features some of the best guitar work on the album. Listen towards the end and you will be blown away by the quality of Joe Bonamassa's playing.
This is a fabulous album from Joe Bonamassa which should further enhance him as a Guitar Legend. It's no longer a debate whether he's one of the greatest of all time, what is left is just whether he will eventually pass Eric Clapton as the Greatest of All Time and if he carries on the way he is then he could do that by the age of 40. Another superb album from a fine guitarist and also an excellent vocalist too. If you like his previous stuff then check this one out. You shouldn't be disappointed.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Dislocated Boy
2 Stones In My Passway
3 Driving Towards The Daylight
4 Who's Been Talking
5 I Got All You Need
6 A Place In My Heart
7 Lonely Town Lonely Street
8 Heavenly Soul
9 New Coat Of Paint
10 Somewhere Trouble Don't Go
11 Too Much Ain't Enough Love (w/ Jimmy Barnes)