Thursday, May 2, 2013

Deal With It reviewed by Harmonica Joe Poluyanskis

Deal With It
4 Jacks
Eller Soul Records
12 tracks/41:20

“Deal With It” is 4 Jacks new release from Eller Soul Records and a good one it is! This CD features a new band that is only new to the music scene as far as this recording goes. This group consists of four hot musicians/blues artist that have been around for years on their own in the blues world.  Leading this group is the awesome Texas guitarist Anson Funderburgh. We all know him as the front man of the Rockets for over thirty years. Big Joe Maher brings his strong vocals and drums into the mix as well as his ability to write a bunch of great tunes. Filling the two remaining spots of 4 Jacks are Kevin McKendree on piano and B3 while Steve Mackey holds up the bass line. This is really one solid a mix of musicians for a CD.

The opening track, “Deal With It”, is a strong instrumental that features outstanding guitar solos from Anson Funderburg (always did like the name) while showcasing Kevin McKendree wailing away on the B3. Maher runs the drum line in the back as Steve Mackey brings along the bass line. This tune is a neat way to introduce us to this very talented band and also opens up our mind as to what is in store for us on the rest of this recording. “Have Ourselves A Time” is one of those jump, swing type songs that gets the people up and dancing. It is a real treat to be introduced to Big Joe’s vocals on this song. This man sings the lyrics with much feeling, joy and emotion as he pounds out the drum beat. Funderburgh lays out some strong guitar riffs as McKendree plunks away on his piano. It can’t get much better than this. “Ansonmypants”, just by the name, is another song that has to be listened to.

McKendree is showcased again on the piano doing “She Ain’t Worth A Dime”. This twelve bar blues tune with great lyrics and vocals from Big Joe is another top tune on “Deal With It”. “Thunder And Lightning” picks up the pace of the music and just screams the blue at you with Anson’s guitar solos, Big Joe’s lyrics and vocals as Kevin hammers away on the piano keys. Maher’s drum line, as well as Mackey’s bass work, is also strongly present. This is a powerful tune that gets you into a blues mode.

4 Jacks has packed twelve solid blues tunes into “Deal With It”. Although being only 41 minutes in duration, this CD gets your attention right from the start and keeps holding you until the very end. To me “Deal With It” is CD is a real winner and 4 Jacks should just keep going down the road of the blues as they have down with this recording.

Reviewed by Harmonica Joe Poluyanskis

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