Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Bob Seger - Smokin' O.P.'s, album review

Vocal Nicotine 

This sees Seger at his rockin’, soulful best, the vocal a powerhouse of glorious growl. The title apparently means smokin’ as in taking/drawing on o.p.’s other people’s songs, so this album of largely covers does just that, starting with Bo Diddley’s Bo Diddley, and stonkingly so, and then a fine version of the many out there of the great Stephen Stills’ song Love the One You’re With. Another many-covered song, Tim Hardin’s If I Were a Carpenter, gets the emotional intensity it deserves with empathetic changes in pace and volume throughout. The organ is brilliant.

Leon Russell’s Hummin’ Bird is a gospel take with hints of Clayton-Thomas a la BS&T; whilst Chuck Berry’s Let it Rock just seems to be in Seger’s DNA.

Two Seger songs close out the album, the string-sweeping ballad Someday, and then a romping Heavy Music with its actual pop-heavy feel.

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