Albert Lee

Road Runner

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If Albert Lee fans have grown used to his commitment to a handful of good songs and extraordinary guitar work, then Road Runner will not disappoint. Lee and his band kick off with the title track, an easy-rolling rocker with a little vocal help from Buddy Miller. Lee follows with a solid set list that includes selections from John Hiatt, Leo Kottke, and Richard Thompson. These songs all receive tasteful renditions, but the real fun comes with uptempo fare like Billy Burnette and Tony Colton's "Didn't Start Livin'," and Delbert McClinton/Benmont Tench/Gary Nicholson's "Livin' It Down." It doesn't hurt that Lee has enlisted the talents of drummer Don Heffington, bassist Bob Glaub, and steel guitarist Buddy Emmons on Road Runner. Guest appearances by co-producer Steve Fishell on "Didn't Start Livin' and "Rock of Your Love," along with guitarist Mark S. Cohen on the latter, also add something extra to these arrangements. One of the coolest exchanges on the album is between Lee and Emmons' guitar and steel for the last minute and a half on "Working on Love." Guitar freaks, of course, will enjoy the album, but so will country music fans looking for tuneful songs that fall somewhere between the rough edges of alternative country and the glitter of Nashville.

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