CD Rattleshake [Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials] (CD 146303),
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Rattleshake [Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials]

  • 1. Leaving Here
    2. Tired of Crying
    3. Golden Rule
    4. You Just Weren't There
    5. Icicles in My Meatloaf
    6. Broken Promises
    7. Tramp on Your Street
    8. Maybe Another Time
    9. Spend Some Time with Me
    10. Nobody's Fault but My Own
    11. You Know You're Wrong
    12. That's the Truth
    13. It's a Beautiful World
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 4909

  • Credits
    ProducerBruce Iglauer; Bruce Iglauer; Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials
    EngineerBlaise Barton

    Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials: Lil' Ed Williams (vocals, guitar); James Young (bass guitar, background vocals); Kelly Littleton, Johnny ''Fingers'' Iguana, Michael Garrett.
    Personnel: Michael Garrett (guitar, background vocals); Johnny ''Fingers'' Iguana (piano, organ); Kelly Littleton (drums); James "Pookie" Young (background vocals).
    Audio Mixer: Blaise Barton.
    Recording information: Joyride Studio, Chicago, IL.
    Photographer: Paul Natkin.
    Chicago's Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials are, and have always been, a hard-rocking, blues-fueled dance band, the kind you hope to catch down at the local bar on a payday Friday night, but just like the aftereffects of a Friday night spent down at the local bar, the music on this, the group's sixth album for Alligator Records, loses clarity and starts to slip from memory as soon as Saturday's sun hits the sky. Sure, everything on Rattleshake rocks, and the energy is undeniable, but in the end, little of this set stays in mind. The opener, a rousing take on Holland-Dozier-Holland's "Leaving Here," starts things off nicely, but somehow things rock along from there without featuring much substance, and most of the set blends into one long dancefloor romp where what ends up being most memorable is the cold beer you throw down at the end. Oh, "Icicles in My Meatloaf" is certainly memorable, but only because it is so ridiculous. The real highlight here, and easily the best track on the album, is a moving version of Billy Joe Shaver's "Tramp on the Street," which shows that Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials can do more than just rock the house with generic stompers when they choose to do so. They're a great live band, and in their natural habitat -- on-stage -- they're tough to beat, but in spite of several albums, they still haven't figured out how to translate that raw energy to the studio. An album is different than a Friday night at the local bar. In the latter, a mediocre song done with energy by the band will still get folks dancing and bopping. On an album, the song better be good, because all the energy in the world won't save it if it isn't. ~ Steve Leggett

  • Critic Reviews
    Dirty Linen (p.85) - "The band plays tight, the singing is gritty, the song selection smartly reflects an ongoing ability to play a mean live set."
    No Depression (pp.135-136) - "[T]he best track here is a deeply felt recasting of Billy Joe Shaver's 'Tramp On Your Street', on which he and the band both show real heart and soul."
    Mojo (Publisher) (p.111) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[M]ature blues heavyweights in the Magic Slim mould, sober but far from sedate."
0 Stars 0 average rating
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