Robert Randolph & The Family Band - Unclassified

Monday 1st March 2004
Robert Randolph & The Family Band - Unclassified
Robert Randolph & The Family Band - Unclassified

STYLE: Blues
RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
LABEL: Warner Alliance 2484722
RRP: £12.99

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

You may remember that Cross Rhythms reviewed some groundbreaking 'Sacred Steel' albums on Arhoolie a few years back which introduced Joe Q Public to the delights of gospel blues performed on steel guitar, a stunning sub-genre developed by African American denomination House Of God. Now the whole thing has moved up a few notches with Robert Randolph signed to Warner Bros and producing some of the most searing sounds yet from an instrument you might have once thought could only produce Hawaiian nostalgia for the terminally uncool. In fact, Robert's music is so hot it's molten, with a band able to crunch out a fat back groove behind his scorching pedal steel runs. Check out the fat funk bass on "Need No More". Swoon over the classic B3 organ sounds throughout. And be continually dazzled by Robert's stunning solos. Robert's voice, like Hendrix before him, is no more than hoarsely perfunctory, but his way with that pedal steel and electric guitars is never less than awe-inspiring. Congrats to Authentic for putting this in UK bookshops. Now make sure you get a copy.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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Sample Track Listing:
1. Going In The Right Direction [Listen]
2. I Need More Love [Listen]
3. Nobody [Listen]

This track data is supplied by the Cross Rhythms CD/DVD review library. Please note that CD tracks may vary according to release region or product version.

Reader Comments

Posted by Ally @ 01:30 on Nov 19 2006

I was fortunate enough to see these chaps on Jools Holland a while back and I bought a copy of this album on the strength of the couple of songs they played.

Bucketloads of energy and the pedal steel playing is breathtaking. I heartily recommend it.

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