Robert Randolph & The Family Band - We Walk This Road
STYLE: Blues RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 94332-16639 LABEL: Warner Bros 093624985587 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RELEASE DATE: 2010-09-20 RRP: £12.99
Reviewed by Peter Timmis
Over the course of almost a decade this American collective have gained a reputation as purveyors of funky gospel blues of the very highest standard and in the process demonstrated that Robert is an absolute master of the slide steel guitar. Their ever expanding list of admirers includes a certain Mr Clapton who liked what he heard so much he invited Robert and the band to tour with him. Production duties on this latest album by Randolph and co are handled by the legendary T Bone Burnett who lends the project a less polished and rougher around the edges feel than previous Family Band releases. This old school style suits the group well - the record has a timeless quality that drips with soulful gospel goodness. Robert's guitar is maybe a little less showy than you might have come to expect but what the band have succeeded in doing is to create an enticing, atmospheric groove-laden vibe. This approach is demonstrated on a hypnotic version of John Lennon's "I Don't Wanna Be A Solider Mama" where the song's anti-war sentiment is delivered with subtlety and conviction. Other great tracks are a powerful interpretation of one of Bob Dylan's more evangelistic songs, "Shot Of Love" where the band are joined by Jim Keltner, who played drums on the original recording and a smouldering cover of Prince's "Walk Don't Walk". Bold and original but with a familiar feel 'We Walk This Road' is Randolph's finest album to date.
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
Interested in reviewing music? Find out
Produced by T Bone Burnett, We Walk This Road continues the Sacred Steel tradition for which Robert Randolph has earned wide praise, including the New York Times, which applauds “his rip-roaring virtuosity and his gift for making his instrument sing without a word.”
The album includes guest appearances from Ben Harper, Leon Russell, Jim Keltne and Doyle Bramhall II and reinterpretations of Prince’s “Walk Don’t Walk,” Bob Dylan’s “Shot Of Love,” and John Lennon’s “I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama”.