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LIL’ BAND O’ GOLD – …Plays Fats

| 11 September 2012 | Reply

Dust Devil Music/EMI, 2012
By Shane Pinnegar

Louisiana stalwarts Lil’ Band Of Gold have produced a record completely devoid of pretention or trend-chasing in this tribute to Antoine “Fats” Domino, and they’ve dragged a few (very) special guests into the studio to lend a hand.

The band are all long time studio veterans from eclectic backgrounds, including drummer Warren Storm (The Shondelles, Slim Harpo), accordionist Steve Riley (Cajun French language band The Mamou Playboys), Phillip Glass alumni Dicky Landry, and singer C C Adcock.

Showing genuine passion and excitement for their subjects, this Lil’ Band rips through infectious old time rock n’ roll songs from one of the early masters like Blue Monday, Let’s Talk It Over (Don’t Lie To Me) with it’s fuzzed out blues riff and plaintiff cry, the Cajun spiced What A Price (Grand Prix) which features a very simple and tasty guitar solo and 4 Winds Blow.

The ‘star turns’ are equally impressive – but never overshadow those by the band themselves.

Robert Plant – long an enthusiastic fan of old time rock n’ roll – wraps his honey-drippin’ throaty tonsils around two fun turns, It Keeps Raining and I’ve Been Around, either of which could have easily sat on his semi-anonymous ’84 Honeydrippers EP.

Lucinda Williams tears I’m Ready a new one with help from Ani DiFranco and Kenny Ball, and it’s hear the revelation sets in: this is a tribute in the purest sense, no-one is trying to reboot Fats’ legacy or transform the songs – they’re perfect as they were and “…Plays Fats” is all about that.

Erstwhile Cold Chisel belter Jimmy Barnes rips through an affectionate Ain’t That A Shame, while You Am I’s Tim Rogers posts a quite astonishing take on I’m Walking, howling and yelping as though possessed by The Spirit Of Rock n’ Roll itself.

Picks of the bunch are almost impossible to narrow down, such is the unrelenting quality. Williams’ or Plants’ turns will be most keenly watched by those looking for the big names, though Rogers equals them easily, and all three rate up there with the band’s Poor Me, lead singer C C perfectly channelling teen angst and heartbreak, longing and hopefulness into a soul-clutching performance.

A must have for fans of good fun, old time rock n’ roll – essential shit for music geeks, in other words!


Category: CD Reviews

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