Album Review

Johnny Mastro And Mama’s Boys – Elmore James For President: Album Review

Blues lovers will instantly appreciate the live festival feel of Johnny Mastro And Mama’s Boys’ new live recorded release, Elmore James For President.

Release date:  26th February 2021

Label: Self Release

Format:  CD / Digital

If you like your guitar mucky, vocals rasping, harmonica harsh, drums raucous and bass stomping; then mashed together to deliver blasting blues this is the album for you. Some albums grow on you, some you can’t stomach and never will but this one grabs you by the ears and doesn’t let go. Great stuff!! Mama is Laura Mae Gross and she  helped to create this astonishing, and wildly abrasive blues. Johnny Mastro’s pedigree as blues master is undisputed, amassing 13 albums and his very own European touring notoriety.

The blistering riffs, the pummelling beat,  even the opening lyric on Elmore James for President  “Well it’s early in the morning,” is only a small step from the “Well I woke up this morning” that may be so familiar to lovers of the blues. However, the pulsating sound created is extremely individual.

Red Guitar too has a highly recognisable backbeat and  breaks in the right places  but the distorted harmonica and guitar has Johnny Mastro’s and Mama’s Boys stamp all over it. See Me in The Morning has an infectious beat  that should have blues jivers running for their dancing shoes. If You Think I Love You and Wildman Call  emphasises the fact that the best way to record these boys is live and to get a feeling of their live experience watch the video we pulled.

It’s not until the Last Dance In Memphis do we feel the pace slow which ends with a staggering guitar solo. This leads into the swampy harmonica based Baby Don’t Worry. After an abrupt ending, the bombastic  pounding blues returns on Rampart Street which is followed by a traditional 12 bar blues Hooch Coochie-style romp, Like Marie Laveau.

The album is brought to a thrashing conclusion with a warning – The Bottle Won’t Save You – and the breathtaking Little Freddie Is King.  Fundamentally this album thrives on many  familiar blues roots  elements but their delivery   style is purely distinctive Johnny Mastro and the Mama’s Boys. Its packed with a magnificent thrashing power that any festival blues fan will love. If  anyone who organises the Colne R & B festival is reading check these out they would be an instant hit!

Johnny Master And The Mama’s Boys online: Website / Facebook / Twitter

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