Review: Ian Siegal & The Mississippi Mudbloods – Candy Store Kid

Posted on: Friday, Feb 1, 2013

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Ian Siegal & The Mississippi Mudbloods – Candy Store Kid

(Nugene Records: NUG1204)

Here’s a gem from last year that we never, for our sins, got around to doing a few words on . . . . an excellent follow-up to “The Skinny” . . . Ian Siegal’s 2011 ‘Youngest Sons’ project – and on “Candy Store Kid” he is reunited with most of that albums players – ‘The Mississippi Mudbloods’ – the record again being recorded at his new ‘spiritual’ home of Zebra Ranch, Coldwater, Mississippi, and produced by Cody Dickinson.

Ian Siegal is without doubt one of our top class bluesmen and the 11 tracks here are mostly self-penned, bar a few collaborations with the likes of Lightnin’ Malcolm and Luther Dickinson and a Gary Burnside song. Apart from Siegal on vocals and guitar, the ‘Mudbloods’ are Cody Dickinson, Luther Dickinson, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Lightnin’ Malcolm and Gary Burnside, with the gospel-flavoured backing vocals prominent, courtesy of Stefanie Bolton, Sharisse Norman and Shantelle Norman.

The opening “Bayou Country” is a souful, slide-drenched ode to the American South, with the ladies backing vocals to the fore; it’s followed by the greasy, swampy “Loose Cannon”, where the great Alvin Youngblood Hart helps out on guitar; the rockabilly-flavoured “I Am The Train” fairly rattles along as the title suggests and it’s a standout here.

The classic North Mississippi Hill Country blues that was brought to a global audience by the likes of RL Burnside and Junior Kimbrough is recalled in the hypnotic Lightnin’ Malcolm song, “So Much Trouble” . . . its guitar hook prominent and again with fine backing vocals. The strutting country blues of “Kingfish” is a joy, with both electric and acoustic slide and Siegals lived-in voice on top form.

Elsewhere highlights include the wry “Earlie Grace Jnr”, a great Siegal original that is again in a country blues mode; the funky electric “Green Power” is a broody number with a lovely groove and a powerful performance from all involved. Given the title you would expect “Rodeo” to be a country tune, and it certainly is . . . . with a lovely Tex-Mex edge to it. “Candy Store Kid” ends on a high with the strutting “Hard Pressed (what da fuzz?) . . . another drop into some funky, and indeed fuzzy, blues . . . another winning album from Mr Siegal indeed!


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