Since forming the Sons of Blues some 30 years ago, Chicago bluesman Billy Branch has made his living performing, and as an in-demand session player, gracing 200-plus recordings including discs from Koko Taylor and Taj Mahal.
Although SoB haven’t released an album in 15 years, Branch’s reunion with the band on Blues Shock sounds like they haven’t been away long at all.
His harp dances across Willie Dixon’s Crazy Mixed Up World and the lively title track. Although Branch’s warm vocals and imaginative harp are the focus here, guitarist Dan Carelli acquits himself nicely on a cover of John Lee Hooker’s Boom Boom while pianist Sumito Ariyoshi vamps alongside Branch on Back Alley Cat. Guests such as Ronnie Baker Brooks spice the stew, making Blues Shock a true celebration of old and new Chicago blues.
Via Blind Pig Records