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Cool Breeze

Cary Hudson

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Album Review

You could make a good case for former Blue Mountain frontman Cary Hudson as a rootsier hybrid of Neil Young and Lowell George. He can rock in full-on fashion, fronting a trio, or he can produce a loving portrait like "Little Darlin'" while keeping the feel of the South in everything. His second solo studio outing nestles closer to the ground than the first at times; as with the folky "Don't Hasten Away," it could almost have been recorded in his living room. He does play some blues — or, more accurately, blues-inflected, material here, like "Haunted House Blues," that has more in common with Little Feat than Muddy Waters (even down to the slide style). If there's one criticism, it's probably that he doesn't rock out enough, although that's not a criticism of the songs here. When he's producing little gems like "Some Things Never Change," which forms a curiously relaxed coda to the disc while having an open, pop feel, it's difficult to feel he's doing anything wrong. But on "Things Ain't What They Used to Be," "What the Old Man Told Me" (an autobiographical piece that ratchets up the tension in glorious fashion before demanding release), and "Jellyroll," he's downright formidable, producing the kind of roots rock that few manage any more, a sort of direct descendent of Creedence in its straightforward drive. With Cool Breeze, Cary Hudson continues to hit home runs.

Biography

Born: Hattiesburg, MS

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Cary Hudson was born in the small church-oriented town of Sumrall, MS. It was here that the future musician grew to appreciate all styles of music, ranging from church music and gospel to blues and country. In the late '80s, Hudson formed the Hilltops, which evolved into Blue Mountain, with partner Laurie Stirratt and John Stirratt. The group toured the American South and released one album before John Stirratt left to form Uncle Tupelo. Blue Mountain continued as a trio, with Frank Coutch playing...
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Cool Breeze, Cary Hudson
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