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ZZ Top: La Futura

For the first time in over 8 years, we finally have a new ZZ Top studio album, and one that will have all the longtime fans celebrating the bands return to their hard rockin' blues roots. With producer Rick Rubin in tow, La Futura manages to be the most fun and exciting ZZ Top affair since Eliminator, but thankfully all those drum machines, synths, and studio trickery that we've heard on way too much of their material in the last few decades is gone, and the band is stripped to the bone once again, guitars all snarling, beefy rhythms, and crusty vocals all over the place.

I mean, when you kick off an album with three red hot tunes such as "I Gotsta Get Paid", "Chartreuse" and "Consumption", all three harkening back to the glory years of Fandango, Tres Hombres and Deguello, you know things are looking up for the band. Billy Gibbons' guitar is as raunchy as ever, rampaging all over both "I Gotsta Get Paid" (a cover of a rap song no less) and the kick ass "Consumption", and he adds some tender blues to the laid back "Over You", his whiskey soaked voice also still holding up well. The groove laden blues of "Heartache in Blue" is accentuated by some guest harmonica from James Harman, and "I Don't Wanna Lose, Lose, You" is a rip snortin' Texas styled blues rocker, complete with some savage Les Paul guitar leads from Gibbons. "Flyin' High" is a straight forward rocker that almost sounds like a cross between AC/DC and The Long Run era Eagles, with Gibbons delivering some crunchy riffs and stabbing leads. One of the CDs slower, darker songs is the smoldering "It's Too Easy Mañana", an emotional bluesy number with some of Gibbons' best vocals on the album, and he delivers some sizzling lead work that soars over the steady rhythms of Frank Beard and Dusty Hill. "Big Shiny Nine" and "Have a Little Mercy" pack in plenty of riffs and groove laden moments, and are sure to be concert favorites. If you pick up the Best Buy version of the CD, you get the two exclusive bonus tracks "Threshold of a Breakdown" and "Drive By Lover", the former a trademark sounding ZZ Top burner with Gibbon's snarling growl and equally ragged slide guitar licks, and the latter a shuffling blues-rock number with some catchy grooves and great vocals from Hill.

Easily the best album ZZ Top has released in some time, La Futura is a rocking, fun good time. Filled with more squealing, nasty guitar licks than most bands can squeeze into their entire careers, and songs that are instantly memorable and sure to become fan favorites, La Futura is one of 2012's nice surprises and shows that ZZ Top still has plenty of gas left in the tank.

Track Listing
1) I Gotsta Get Paid
2) Chartreuse
3) Consumption
4) Over You
5) Heartache in Blue
6) I Don't Wanna Lose, Lose, You
7) Flyin' High
8) It's Too Easy Mañana
9) Big Shiny Nine
10) Have a Little Mercy
11) Threshold of a Breakdown
12) Drive By Lover

Added: September 18th 2012
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2432
Language: english

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