Walter Trout & His Band: Luther’s Blues: A Tribute To Luther Allison

Incandescent six-string salute from New Jersey survivor.

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Following last year’s firecracker, career highlight Blues For The Modern Daze, Trout hasn’t paused for breath. Covers albums can sometimes be a stopgap, a chance to ease off the intensity. Not so here, where the unbridled feeling and ferocity on display is a testimony to the ardour of a long-held passion and friendship.

Ever since the passing of his associate Allison in 1997, Trout has had this album in mind. The deep-rooted connection to Allison’s work has evidently only been strengthened by Trout’s own artistic growth in the intervening years.

From the affirmative opener I’m Back, through the socially conscious Move From The Hood and Freedom, Trout plays with a freshness belying his 62 years. The live-and-direct nature of the performances (often done in one or two takes), are a tonic in themselves, and have already resulted in this listener’s Allison reinvestigation. Good work all round.

Gavin Martin

Late NME, Daily Mirror and Classic Rock writer Gavin Martin started writing about music in 1977 when he published his hand-written fanzine Alternative Ulster in Belfast. He moved to London in 1980 to become the NME’s Media Editor and features writer, where he interviewed the Sex Pistols, Joe Strummer, Pete Townshend, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Ian Dury, Killing Joke, Neil Young, REM, Sting, Marvin Gaye, Leonard Cohen, Nina Simone, James Brown, Willie Nelson, Willie Dixon, Madonna and a host of others. He was also published in The Times, Guardian, Independent, Loaded, GQ and Uncut, he had pieces on Michael Jackson, Van Morrison and Frank Sinatra featured in The Faber Book Of Pop and Rock ’N’ Roll Is Here To Stay, and was the Daily Mirror’s regular music critic from 2001. He died in 2022.