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September 19, 2017


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VARIOUS ARTISTS
This Ain't No Tribute -- Whole Lotta Blues: Songs of Led Zeppelin (House of Blues)

By: Alex Steininger

Ten Led Zeppelin classics get new life as several artists take the blues which Led Zeppelin loved so dearly and brings it to the forefront of the music. Eric Gales, Alvin "Youngblood" Hart, Otis Rush, Otis Clay, and Robert Lockwood, Jr. join others in redefining the blues side of Led Zeppelin on this disc sure to please blues and Zeppelin fans alike.

Let the truth be told. I was never a Led Zeppelin fan; for me the New York Dolls, Iggy Pop and the Stooges, The Ramones, and MC5 are the classics. So, to try and compare these sweet blues numbers to the originals would be absurd on my part. But, I do know that the blues showed up a lot in the style of 70's rock Led Zeppelin played. So, for these artists to take the songs they love by an artist they love and bring out the blues, you've got to see the value in that. Even if you weren't a Zeppelin fan. I mean, Eric Gales smooth, gritty voice on "Custard Pie" combined with his fragile, back porch guitar licks can't be ignored by anyone.

Otis Rush's interpretation of "I Can't Quit You Baby" is a soulful blues number dripping with tingling sounds sure to send vibrations throughout your body. "Hey Hey What Can I Do," re-defined by Chris Thomas King is another smashing example of the fluid, colorful blues turning the song into something alive.

Simply put: this is a disc full of lively blues music sure to make any blues fan go crazy. Whether or not you're a Led Zeppelin fan isn't the question here; it's the new formation of these songs, with the blues coming out from every corner, which makes this a great blues album. I'll give it a B+.

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