16 years on from his debut record ‘Cheap‘ comes the 10th studio album from the ever-brilliant enigma that is Seasick Steve. Mystery and wonder ever shrouds the true history behind the stage persona Steve has created for himself, but the one thing that is of no mistake is the mans talent and understanding of what makes a great blues record. At 69 the travellin’ man shows no signs of wavering or slowing down on his latest offering led by some infectious riff heavy tracks such as ‘Clock Is Running‘ and ‘Toes In The Mud‘.
Title track Love and Peace kicks off proceedings with Steve preaching for us all to remove ourselves from the things that entangle us in our own self-loathing and to reconnect through the power of music. Twin that wholesome message with a sharp bluesy guitar hook looping throughout and you have yourself the perfect opener reeling you forward into this record.
Next up is ‘Regular Man’ – guiding you on along with its walking-paced beat – which is the blues personified in its tales of times and worries gone-by before we head on into the brilliant ‘I Will Do For You’ with its militaresque drum beat and riff that chimes along in unison.
Onto one of this records highlights is the mood-rousing ‘Clock Is Running’ with its toe-tapping groove and no nonsense lyrics. The riff I guarantee will be stuck in your head long after listening to this one. Check out the video below…
Following on is ‘Carni Days’ which is a more subdued acoustic track that partly feels like an ode to those early style blues in its simplicity before we had into the corker that is ‘Church Of Me’. Starting off with a calm catchy hook the track builds gradually into an all out blues-rock epic with Steve firing on all cylinders for its chorus.
The hits keep coming as we reach probably my favourite track on the record ‘Toes In The Mud’. It feels like the very type of track that is built for a festival stage to interact with new and old listeners alike willing them further forward in unison to get involved with the performance. Kicking off with its infectious riff and bass thump you would be pushed to find a crowd that won’t clap along to it before creating states of hysteria with the sublime guitar solo at the chorus. I need to see this played live.
Things begin to take a more chilled approach and slow down on the likes of ‘My Woman’ and album closer ‘Mercy’ but there is one more standout track nestled in-between and that is the excellent ‘Ain’t Nothin’ But The Boogie‘ that you may just find yourself shimmying along to. Check out the stripped back version of it below…
Overall this is a solid record to have in your collection, and I wholly advice on giving it the time of day. At nearly 70 years of age the man is still creating some of the finest sounding blues-rock riffs out there and his vocals are still as great as ever. Appreciate him whilst he’s still around!