fri 12/04/2024

CD: Seasick Steve – Sonic Soul Surfer | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Seasick Steve – Sonic Soul Surfer

CD: Seasick Steve – Sonic Soul Surfer

Festival perennial replenishes the soul with good vibes

Sonic Soul Surfer - a return to form

As thoughts begin to turn to this summer’s music festivals, it only seems appropriate that along comes Sonic Soul Surfer, the latest album from festie-perennial Seasick Steve. In fact, it’s hard to believe, given what seems to be his ubiquity among the fields of England, that it’s less than 10 years since Steve Wold became the self-proclaimed “cat’s meow” with his appearance on Jools Holland’s 2006 annual Hootenanny TV show.

Seasick Steve’s sixth album, is prime-time, rough and ready hobo music that puts a spring in your step and a smile on your face. To be honest, this doesn’t really mark it out as much different from his previous five albums – but that’s certainly no cause for complaint. From the full-tilt Mississippi trance music of “Sonic Soul Boogie” to the laid-back blues of “Swamp Dog” and the hillbilly ballad “In Peaceful Dreams”, Sonic Soul Surfer is a rainbow of North American roots music. As usual, Steve’s subject matter mainly revolves around hobo-life but is never maudlin, even in ballads like “Heart Full of Stars”. In fact, on the slide-guitar flavoured boogie of “Barracuda ‘68”, Seasick Steve positively replenishes the soul with good vibes.

Alongside regular drummer Dan Magnusson, Luther Dickinson of the Mississippi All Stars and a couple of others appear on a few tunes, but Soul Sonic Surfer never becomes a back-slapping guest-star showcase – something that Steve’s previous album, Hubcap Music, only just avoided. If anything it’s actually a return to form on a par with 2011’s You Can’t Teach An Old Dog New Tricks and that can only bode well for his forthcoming tour, as well as festival time – because as good as he is in the studio, it’s in the live arena that Seasick Steve really is the Master.

Prime-time, rough and ready hobo music that puts a spring in your step and a smile on your face


Editor Rating: 
Average: 4 (1 vote)

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