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Gov't Mule featuring John Scofield: Sco-Mule

Still unbelievable to think that Gov't Mule have now been around for over 20 years (yep...I'm gettin' old!), but they are celebrating in style, first with the release of Dark Side of the Mule and now Sco-Mule, a kicking, all-instrumental live set recorded from two shows in Georgia featuring guest jazz/blues guitar legend John Scofield. If you are at all familiar with Gov't Mule, no doubt you are aware that these guys can jam and jam all night long, and with the help of Scofield and special guest keyboardist Dr. Dan Matrazzo, guitarist-singer Warren Haynes, drummer Matt Abts, bassist Jorgen Carlsson and multi-instrumentalist Danny Louis take these songs into the stratosphere.

The results of the pairing of Haynes & Scofield totally lives up to the billing; these two amazing guitar slingers play off each other like they've been doing this together for decades. Haynes, whether he works with Dickie Betts, Derek Trucks, or here with Scofield, just becomes the perfect guitar partner, as he and 'Sco' trade blistering solos throughout Sco-Mule, heard in full force on the daring "Doin' It to Death", as the rhythm section pulls off a funky vamp over which the two axe masters attempt to 'duel to the death'. "Birth of the Mule" takes on a real jazz flavor here, as Scofield's funky soul combats Haynes' blistering slide guitar explorations. Matrazzo's tasty electric piano & organ provides a soft bed for some funky licks from the guitar masters on the title track, and the near 19-minute "Kind of Bird" allows the entire ensemble to shine, with rhythms locked in, a blazing synth jaunt, and a never ending mix of jazz, blues, and hard rock guitar solos firing from all directions. The solid funk of "Pass The Peas" is irresistible, and the two guitarists scorch the earth on the mind-blowing jazz-fusion of "Devil Likes It Slow".

Warning: if you don't like extended guitar & keyboard solos, or get turned off by instrumental music, then steer clear of Sco-Mule. However, if everything you've read above sounds enticing, then I can't recommend this sprawling live set of jams highly enough. This is musicianship of the highest caliber folks. Long live the Mule!

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing
CD1 01 Hotentot
CD1 02 Tom Thumb
CD1 03 Doin It To Death
CD1 04 Birth of the Mule
CD1 05 Sco-Mule
CD1 06 Kind of Bird

CD2 01 Pass The Peas (Bonus Track)
CD2 02 Devil Likes It Slow (Bonus Track)
CD2 03 Hottentot (Alt. Version) (Bonus Track)
CD2 04 Kind Of Bird (Alt. Version) (Bonus Track)
CD2 05 Afro-Blue (with edit)

Added: January 24th 2015
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 2125
Language: english

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» Reader Comments:

Gov't Mule featuring John Scofield: Sco-Mule
Posted by John on 2021-08-02 15:07:42
My Score:

Allen Woody was the bassist on this live album from 1999. Please relisten.

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