George Thorogood / George Thorogood & the Destroyers

Born to Be Bad

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Vintage Thorogood, which is to say a defiantly unsubtle, unabashedly party-hearty serving of Chicago blues (a convincing version of Howlin' Wolf' "Highway 49"), rockabilly (a smart revamp of Chuck Berry's "You Can't Catch Me"), '60s R&B (Roy Head's horn-driven "Treat Her Right"), country (Hank Snow's often covered "I'm Movin' On"), and self-mythologizing (the title tune, which is rather more overtly ironic than his earlier "Bad to the Bone"). Thorogood also offers a sharp take on Elmore James's "Shake Your Money Maker," which may or may not erase memories of the Butterfield Band's version but which smokes nonetheless. And his guitar work rises to the occasion and then some on a scorching recreation of Wolf's perennial "Smokestack Lighting."

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