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Fast Eddie Clarke, featuring Bill Sharpe: Make My Day, Back To The Blues

No matter what he turns his hands to, Fast Eddie Clarke will always be best known as the man shredding the frets on "Ace Of Spades" by Motorhead and considering what a seminal moment in Heavy Metal that track is, it's not a bad calling card. However through Fastway, Fast Eddie has probably been at his best whilst parted from Lemmy and Co, with his band's most recent release, Eat Dog Eat, with Little Angel Toby Jepson behind the mic, a bit of a cracker.

Whether through Fastway, On Target, or indeed Motorhead, Fast has always made his mark whilst part of a band, with up until now, 1994's It Ain't Over Till It's Over being his sole solo release. However not only is Make My Day, Back To The Blues solo album number two (alongside Shakatak's keyboard player Bill Sharpe), it is also a complete departure from the Metal and Hard Rock we've always known this man for. Obviously the album title gives away what you can expect from Make My Day, Back To The Blues, although I'd suggest that the smooth, considered guitar attack may still catch some by surprise and cause the man himself to be dubbed "Slow Hand" Eddie Clarke, such is the contrast. Unsurprisingly for a guitarist whose catalogue stretches back as far as his 1974 albums with Curtis Knight Zeus, Clarke has no problem sliding into a selection of traditional straight up Heavy Blues, where touches of Soul are in evidence through the classy female backing vocals. The Hammond embellishments from Sharpe are most welcome and it becomes easy to hear the Blues are obviously something close to this man's heart.

Clarke himself also handles vocals here and if there's any one clear sticking point, then that might be it. The man can sing, of that there's no doubt, but there's a lack of character, or bite to is delivery, causing the end results to slip into run of the mill, if expertly put together, Blues that you could find in many a bar. That said there's still a huge amount to enjoy about the chugging "Walking Too Slow", the bar-room boogie of "Fast Train", the Soulful, captivating "Make My Day", or languid "One Way". However suggesting that even these album highlights truly standout on in a collection where no songs let the side down, yet none really shine, would be stretching things. Make My Day, Back To The Blues is an enjoyable listening experience, yet in the cold, blue light of day, there really isn't a huge amount to get particularly excited about.

Track Listing
1. Nothing Left
2. Mountains To The Sea
3. Make My Day
4. Heavy Load
5. Fast Train
6. Walking Too Slow
7. Haven't Got The Time
8. One Way
9. My New Life
10. Ethereal Blue

Added: October 3rd 2014
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Fast Eddie Clarke online
Hits: 1922
Language: english

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