He certainly is a solid singer and certainly pulls out all the stops on his solos. The band is solid and keeps a rock-solid, heavy groove going, which suits Mahar. The performances are originals, although Linda Lu sounds like a reworking of the Ray Sharpe classic rock and roll number and has nice harp from Karl Kabbage. You Don’t Have to Tell Me has a clever opening, with a riff from Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues, before launching in the quick walking tempo with twin guitars soloing against each.
I Never Meant Us to Fall is a nice change of pace, with a relaxed vocal on a r&B tinged ballad. The title track is a nicely done shuffle with particularly nice guitar, the rhythm section swings and some nice horns in the background. This writer assumes that Mahar is playing the dobro on, I Got My Baby Working, which places new lyrics to Got My Mojo Working, and again benefits from a more laid back rhythm. The closing track, Someday I’m Gonna Know, is a gospel number which he performs accompanied solely by his dobro.
For my taste, this is a mixed bag. Some of the tracks sound a bit heavy-handed and the backing is too busy. Those whose tastes lean towards a rock-tinged blues may find much more here to their liking.
This review originally appeared in the April 2008 Jazz & Blues Report (Issue 304) and I have made some minor stylistic revisions. I am not sure of my source for the review copy although it likely came from a publicist or Jazz & Blues Report.