Recorded in London, May 17, 2007, the 74 minute and 20 second CD has Gary Moore in top form, his blistering guitar all over your eardrums on this hard-hitting blues outing which has the usual high standard packaging from Eagle Records including an informative 8 page booklet containing Liz Barnes’ liner notes.
“If the Devil Made Whiskey” sounds less like a blues master and more like the grungy bootleg version of “Gimme Shelter” from the Rolling Stones Liver Than You’ll Ever Be crossed with the Velvet Underground’s “Sister Ray” in tonal quality. Even Chuck Berry’s “Thirty Days,” track 2 on Gary Moore’s Live At Bush Hall, 2007, has a Ron-Wood-on-steroids guitar sound, heavier and dirtier than Chuck – or the Rolling Stones’ renditions of Berry, could ever aspire to be.
This contrasts with the eight minute and thirty six seconds of “Don’t Say A Word,” with a vibe very similar to Ten Years After’s “Love Like A Man,” only it drives towards the end in its own, unique way. Moore’s band a quartet (including him) like TYA – only with his reliable friend from many Moore albums, drummer Brian Downey (founding member of Thin Lizzy, which had Moore in the band for less than half a year,) Vic Martin on keyboards and Pete Rees on bass, all delivering the goods. The almost 7 minute “Still Got the Blues” takes “Don’t Say a Word” style-isms even deeper into the genre.
The first five tracks are the shorter bursts while the titles grow longer as the concert progresses. “Sundown” – a cover of the group Son House – closes the disc out with Moore’s acoustic/slide guitar prowess elegant and authoritative. The album sneaks up on you and has real staying power, not just another slice of the blues as it is a slightly different perspective on the art form.
If The Devil Made Whisky 3:20 – Thirty Days 3:43 – Trouble At Home 5:51 – Hard Times 3:30 – Eyesight To The Blind 2:58 – I Had A Dream 7:56 – Too Tired 5:14 – Gary’s Blues 1 4:33 – Don’t Believe a Word 8:35 – Still Got The Blues 6:50 – Walking by Myself 4:53 – The Blues is Alright 9:11 – Sundown 6:58
Joe Viglione is the Chief Film Critic at TMRZoo.com. He has written thousands of reviews and biographies for AllMovie.com, Allmusic.com, Gatehouse Media, Al Aronowitz’s The Blacklisted Journal, and a variety of other media outlets. Joe also produces and hosts Visual Radio, a seventeen year old variety show on cable TV which has interviewed Jodie Foster, director/screenwriter David Koepp, Michael Moore, John Cena, comics/actors Margaret Cho, Gilbert Gottfried, Gallagher, musicians Mark Farner and Don Brewer of Grand Funk Railroad, Ian Hunter of Mott The Hoople, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, Felix Cavaliere of The Rascals, political commentator Bill Press and hundreds of other personalities.