Indigenous

Indigenous

  • AllMusic Rating
    5
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

For its major-label debut, the Native American quartet keeps its sound bulked up but stripped down. They haven't transcended their obvious Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan-isms, although there are also indications of Robin Trower and '70s power trio blues-rock outfits such as Cactus here as well. Guitarist/vocalist Mato Nanji stays entrenched in the spotlight, with his bass-playing brother, drumming sister, and a practically inaudible cousin on percussion contributing anonymous support. Nanji projects a powerful presence throughout; his dusky vocals are emotional without bombast and his fluid guitar jumps out of the murky mix like a lighthouse through the fog. Production by the British Davey Brothers (the Hoax) plays a substantial role, as they create a thick sonic soup, providing the band with a gutsy wall of sound. The basic tracks were cut live, adding a spark to the performances -- especially the slow blues of "I Wonder" that catches a particularly hot moment -- but some of these songs are not only similar to each other, they are reminiscent of standard blues-rockers in the catalogs of the band's obvious influences. So even though "Take Some Time" is an original, its unhurried shuffle sounds like any of a dozen songs in the Stevie Ray Vaughan catalog. A sledgehammer version of Jimmy Reed's "Shame Shame Shame" is the album's only official cover, though. As the disc progresses, the production and approach become repetitious, and the quality of the material declines. Still, for those who want to turn the volume up to 11, Indigenous competently fills the blues-rock bill.

blue highlight denotes track pick