Matt Carter | @m_j_c73
First things first. Richie Young can play the harmonica really well. He’s probably one of the best harp players around. And on his debut release, Attack of the Blues, he was able to conjure up that beautiful distorted harp tone that gave unforgettable accompaniment to some of blue music’s most timeless recordings.
Now, I admit I’m not the best person for the job when it comes to reviewing blues music, either contemporary or traditional. I enjoy those old scratchy sounding recordings a lot and consider myself a fan of some modern day players too, but in a genre clouded with too many acts simply rehashing the same chord progressions, and singing styles that have been done a thousand times, there really is little to separate one act from another so I don’t spend a lot of time seeking out new blues music.
Attack of the Blues is in many ways a tribute to simple 12 bar blues and three chord folk. Young presents five songs comfortable in their predictability and familiarity. He has not set out to push the boundaries or attempt anything new on this introductory release. He seems content, at least for now, to keep his focus on delivering straight ahead, simple melodies that remind us why this music has stood the test of time.