Luther Allison's Underground is the much talked about release from a blues guitar legend.
Luther Allison - Underground
Underground: Ride Away, Don't Start Me Talking, Drivin' Wheel, Cut You Loose, Easy Baby, You're Gonna Miss Me, Take My Love, Rock Me Baby
Personnel: Luther Allison: Vocals, Lead Guitar; Bobby Rush: Bass; Mule: Bass; Bobby King: Rhythm Guitar; Robert Plunkett: Drums; Sammy Logan: Runner
Underground was produced by Bobby Rush on the Ruf Records label. The release of Underground was reported to be a set of previously unreleased recording from 1958, but after extensive reviews and analysis it was reported that the recordings were actually more likely from a 1968 session for an upcoming record release. So, what makes this recording interesting? Is it the misdirection of the liner notes and the false release information, or is that you get to hear Luther Allison relaxed and playing his heart out across a set of tracks? Obviously, it the raw mix of Luther's playing and singing that will draw people to this recording. If you are a blues collector you may have a bootleg copy of the release of these songs, but there are only a few around. So, if you are blues lover then you get to listen to an intense as well as laid back set of music by Luther Allison while adding to your collection of legends of blues guitarists.
The release is just a mere 26 minutes of music, but in this short powerful CD you will hear the foundation of what made Luther Allison a blues guitar legend. I found that listening to Underground was like spending an evening at Luther's home, hanging out and getting to know blues through the shrewd musicianship of his guitar work and vocals. The door opens on this release with the track Hide Away and Luther greets us with some rapid fire licks spiking the energy right from the start. Don't Start Me Talking is a down and dirty blues track and the vocals are a compelling complement to his intense guitar playing. Digging deeper into his soul he belts out the blues staple Drivin' Wheel and I felt that I was looking directly at Luther and feeling his passion. Cut You Loose touches a raw nerve of guitar chords and lyrics as Luther sings, "You know that I work, work, work woman, but all I got to show, the only thing you give me baby is a hard way to go. I'm throwing up both my hands."
The release includes Easy Baby which has Luther scoring some great rock-and-roll rifs, and the track You're Gonna Miss Me which is like listening to Luther kicking his shoes off and relaxing on the sofa with his guitar. Take My Love and Rock Me Baby round out Underground and show a definite rocking Luther in both guitar work and in how he delivers his vocals.
Lost, found, or re-released, the fact that this recording shows Luther at a time when his sound was still developing is a treasure to listen to. Though the recording is not crystal clear and you may pick up a few flaws, if you are blues fan then this is worth giving a spin.
Websites where you can procure Luther Allison's Underground are Ruf Records, Yahoo, VH1, CD Universe, Alibris, MTV, and Amazon.
© May 2008. Luxury Experience. www.LuxuryExperience.com. All rights reserved.