Doyle Bramhall II

Doyle Bramhall II

Doyle Bramhall II

Shades

Mascot Label Group/Provogue

Doyle Bramhall II is one of the most versatile and underrated musicians on the music scene, quietly working with artists such as Eric Clapton, Roger Waters, Gregg Allman, Tedeschi Trucks Band and Sheryl Crow. Whether as guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, writer or producer, Bramhall’s collaborations always lean toward the brilliant side. Following the 2016 release of Rich Man, the Austin rocker is back on a new label with his self-produced, twelve-track record, Shades. Ten of the twelve cuts were either written or co-written by Bramhall. Featuring a handful of impressive guest musicians as well as members of his own touring band (who were included on his last record as well), Bramhall has once again created a mixture of signature blues-based, guitar-driven rockers and poignant ballads. There are echoes here of both Welcome (2001) and Rich Man, two vastly different records, but somehow Bramhall creates the perfect balance and offers a little something for everyone.

Opening strong with two gritty rockers, “Love and Pain” (influenced by the 2017 mass shooting at Route 91 Harvest music festival in Las Vegas) and “Hammer Ring,” Bramhall hearkens back to his early sound. “Hammer Ring” has a distinctively catchy groove. A good portion of the record focuses more on Bramhall’s soulful, R&B side. “Everything You Need,” which features Eric Clapton on guitar, is a real standout, as are “London To Tokyo” (with beautiful strings) “Searching For Love,” a gorgeous duet with Norah Jones, and the album gem, “Break Apart To Mend.” Peppered throughout are the Beatles-flavored rocker “Live Forever,” which includes fellow Austin pals, Greyhounds, and the Indian-inspired “Parvanah.” As he did on his last record, Bramhall closes this one with a cover, and a mighty cover it is. Co-produced with Derek Trucks and featuring the entire Tedeschi Trucks Band, Bramhall tackles Bob Dylan’s “Going Going Gone.” This lush, multi-layered version also includes horn arrangements from Jay Collins, who did horn arrangements for Gregg Allman’s cover of the same song on his posthumous release, Southern Blood.

This record is a very personal one for Bramhall, who confesses that “the new record finally feels like I’m comfortable in my own skin, like I don’t have anything to prove other than trying to express myself as honestly as I can.” Mission accomplished.

www.db2music.com

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Eddie Izzard
    Eddie Izzard

    The cross-dressing comic returned to Memphis with history, philosophy, and plenty of laughs.

  • Gary Wittner
    Gary Wittner

    Too Modern for Me. (Invisible Music Records) Review by Stacey Zering.

  • Willard Gayheart & Friends
    Willard Gayheart & Friends

    At Home in the Blue Ridge (Blue Hens Music). Review by Carl F. Gauze.

  • Alex McArtor
    Alex McArtor

    Touch/Are You Alone (Bigmac Records). Review by Stacey Zering.

  • Superstar
    Superstar

    Sex, drugs, adultery, murder and finally, redemption – it’s all intertwined in the tale of Trent Davis, the “star” of author Christopher Long‘s latest, Superstar.

  • Moloko Plus
    Moloko Plus

    Moloko Plus is a monthly experimental music event in Orlando, Florida.

  • General Magic
    General Magic

    General Magic invented the smart phone in 2002, but just couldn’t get it to market. That’s just how they rolled.

  • Blue October
    Blue October

    Alternative 90s rockers Blue October rolled into Central Florida for a two-night run at House of Blues, and Michelle Wilson was blown away.

  • Pahokee
    Pahokee

    Pahokee produces sugar cane and poverty, but some the brighter students might make it to the big time with a college degree and a new zip code.

  • Sumo Princess
    Sumo Princess

    When An Electric Storm. (Educational Recordings) Review by Bob Pomeroy.

From the Archives