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Album Review

On his eighth album, Jimmy Thackery churns out rugged, no-nonsense, authoritative rock, with a passion and commitment that seep through every track. Thackery's grinding guitar and growling voice pound out each song as if he's playing for thousands of people. He is produced once again by the experienced Jim Gaines who, through his work with Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert Collins, Tommy Castro, and Santana, knows his way around a blues-rock record. The uncut, Stonesy chug of "Never Enough" and "Lovin' My Money" is offset by the harder-edged funk of "Grab the Rafters" and the easier jazz shuffle of "Bad News." Saxist Jimmy Carpenter, new to the Thackery band, adds a soulful honk on the latter tune, gradually shifting the disc into more subtle territory. When the band starts wading into swampy waters like on the deep, dark groove of the album's instrumental title track, Carpenter provides a rough bed for the guitarist's poker-hot solo to nuzzle next to. Thackery's gruff and unremarkable voice remains his most limiting asset, and may be the reason his music hasn't crossed over like that of the more ostentatious Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Jonny Lang. But similar to most blues guitarists, the song is secondary to its presentation, and when Thackery unleashes his barely contained six-string fury, there are few who can compare. Considering the bluesman's arena is predominantly the live stage, Sinner Street is another extraordinarily strong entry into his catalog. Established blues-rock fans will naturally devour this whole, but the disc is as good a place as any for the novice to enjoy one of the more overlooked talents in the field.

Sinner Street, Jimmy Thackery & The Drivers
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