Friday, November 18, 2016

John Mayall Live in 1967 Vol. 2

"Live in 1967 - Volume 2" by John Mayall's Bluesbreakers (Forty Below Records), is the second set of club recordings made by Tom Huisson, a Dutch fan of Mayall that captured the edition of the Bluesbreakers that were together for three months with Peter Green was on guitar, John McVie on bass and Mick Fleetwood were on drums. As I wrote reviewing the prior review "Eric Corne engineered and remastered these recordings that Huisson recorded on a single track tape recorder to result in a listenable if not hi-fidelity release. Mick Fleetwood suffers the most in the audio as it almost sounds like he is playing wood blocks."

There is a mix of covers along with some Mayall originals including the opening "Tears in My Eyes," with some spectacular, if lengthy, Green guitar. A cover of Sonny Boy Williamson's "Your Funeral and My Trial," is taken too fast and comes off as a bar band romp. Mayall's love of Otis Rush is heard on "So Many Roads" and the closing "Double Trouble." Of course as a vocalist Mayall is nowhere in Rush's league, but invests feeling in these with Green stretching out. Sonny Boy's "Bye Bye Bird" is a showcase for Mayall on harp with a little Ray Charles interpolated into the performance. "Please Don't Tell" is a messy sounding original (with rough sound) while covering B.B. King's "Sweet Little Angel" provides another showcase for Green. There is a cover of J.B. Lenoir, whose blues Mayall championed, along with a rendition of Eddie Taylor's "Bad Boy," while Ronnie Jones handles the vocal on "Stormy Monday." Green's original "Greeny," is an instrumental showcase while Lionel Hampton's "Ridin' on the L&N" is hot rock and roll.

I stated regarding the prior album, that it was indispensable for fans of Mayall, Peter Green and early Fleetwood Mac. It has been awhile since I listened to that, but the sound is pretty rough on some of this and this will deter many listeners, which is unfortunate as the music here does seem more interesting than his most recent studio album.

I received my review copy from a publicist. 

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