Eugene "Hideaway" Bridges

Jump the Joint

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Singer/guitarist Bridges knows how to rock the house. He might not be doing anything new, but he can find a groove and hold on to it, with some strong blues heavily spiced by his native New Orleans in the rhythm and delivery. There's even a gospel flavor to some of the tracks, although the overall feel is just having a good time (he does, however, get more serious on "Living"). This is a much more consistent album than his last effort, and Bridges sounds more assured both vocally and instrumentally, while his compositions, if not sophisticated (hardly a word that applies here) have moved up to the next level, and are sounding distinctive rather than generic. His band is also far more together. That he's a B.B. King fan is quite apparent from his guitar work (and there are certainly far worse role models), but you can also hear people from Otis Redding to Sam Cooke in the way he phrases a song. In short, he might not be innovative, but he's certainly solid.

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