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Firkins, Michael Lee: Yep

Guitarist Michael Lee Firkins might not have attained the guitar-god status critics once predicted for him back in the Nineties Jeff Beck comparisons abounded but more than two decades on, he's still at it. For Yep, his first album in five years, Firkins recruited musicians from bigger bands: Gov't Mule drummer Matt Abts, former Black Crowes bassist Andy Hess and ex-Allman Brothers Band and current Rolling Stones touring keyboardist Chuck Leavell.

Yep is a rootsy, bluesy rock album for grown-ups. Lyrics reflect the toll years in the music biz have taken on Firkins, and the album's simple yet defiant title suggests his newfound no-nonsense attitude toward his work. Firkins sings in a strong, dusty voice that recalls Noah Hunt, who sang Kenny Wayne Shepherd's haunting 1997 single, "Blue on Black," and his guitar playing has evolved far from his early shredder status. Long songs that stretch past seven minutes allow Firkins and his band to explore textures and moods, and solos evolve thrillingly.

That's why the best tracks here happen to be the lengthier ones, including the Southern-rock slow-burner "Long Day," the mid-paced scorcher "Out of Season," the feel-good twang-rocker "Take Me Back" and the mature and muscular two-parter "No More Angry Man."

Good stuff? Yep.

Track Listing:
1) Golden Oldie Jam
2) Cajun Boogie
3) No More Angry Man
4) Standing Ovation
5) Long Day
6) Wearin' Black
7) Out of Season
8) Take Me Back
9) Last Call
10) No More Angry Man (Part 2)
11) The Cane

Added: October 26th 2013
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Michael Lee Firkins on Magnatude Records
Hits: 2370
Language: english

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