Bugs Henderson

Backbop: The Unreleased 1982 Sessions

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Had this been released in 1982, it would have been the third album for the Bugs Henderson Group. It was not released at that time, however, due to differing thoughts on its style. In 1998 the tapes were resurrected and the vocals were re-cut. Like quite a few of Henderson's releases, Backbop mixes brilliant moments of guitar mastery with complete let-downs. Only serious guitar freaks and die-hard Bugs fans will find this one worth the price of admission. Don't expect much in the way of blues either. Most of Backbop is good old-fashioned rock & roll -- except it's not all that good. The strongest cuts are "Help Me," which blends sounds as diverse as '70s rock and Chet Atkins; "Love Junkie," which comes the closest to blues with some nice jazzy riffs that are lessened only by too much repetition; and "Thief of the Night," which sees Henderson at his fiercest, rocking out with all the speed and bends his fans cherish. His customary "Audio Liner Notes," his personal visit with the listener, features some very nice acoustic picking and strumming under his voice as he details the origins of the album's tunes. For the most part, this is hard '70s rock & roll, reflecting the crazy life and times of the band during that period. Bugs describes it best: "high intensity, up-tempo, get it on and kick it stuff." [A Danish verison of the CD was issued in 2000.]

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