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Gregg Allman - 'No Stranger To The Dark: The Best Of' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/33/54/6b/gregg-allman-no-stranger-to-the-dark-best-of-49-1523735794.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     April 14, 2018    
 
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A definite starting point if you want to catch up on a mighty fine composer, player and singer.

Now I have to admit, when asked me if I would like to review this, my knowledge of Gregg Allman was pretty much limited to the fact that he was in The Allman Brothers Band and once married to Cher. Having had a fleeting listen to 'I'm No Angel' and 'Just Before The Bullets Fly' back in the eighties, I found myself filing Allman under the "will get to later" file. Whilst Allman may never have achieved the commercial success of TABB, he has over the years written some mighty fine material influenced heavily by his Southern upbringing. Boogie it's not. Blues, yes sort of... because Allman is not easy to pigeon hole into one genre.

This album appears to be a re-issue of the 2002 release. I'm afraid I have no information as to why, but at this point in time Allman would have released five studio albums which essentially is where this compilation is drawn from. With the exceptions of TABB's 'Melissa' (included as a previously unreleased live track), 'These Days' (from one of his early seventies studio albums – also live) and a 1985 studio track 'Hopelessly Miss You', this release sees Allman stretch out in a more straight-forward Rock mode as opposed to the Blues-tinged Rock he's normally associated with.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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For those unfamiliar with Allman, who is rightly regarded as one of the most soulful Blues players and writers that ever walked the planet, there is plenty here to get your teeth into. There's no doubting the quality of tracks such as 'I'm No Angel', 'Island' and 'Before The Bullets Fly' where Epic's Michael Caplan (A&R godfather) polished these up no end to score maximum airplay on mid-eighties FM radio – this led to the '...Angel' album going gold. For all the polished finesse, there are moments of pure Blues, 'Slip Away' vying with 'I've Got News For You', which sounds like Allman strolled into some dark and dingy Blues club in the Mississippi backwaters and hooked up with the resident band. Complete with simmering brass section, this really is the story of the Blues. Gregg Allman has a voice to die for; smooth, gruff, soft, sweet, whiskey-soaked, all depending on the requirement and it all flows effortlessly. Think Jeff Healy in 'Roadhouse' and you might not be a million miles away.

A definite starting point if you want to catch up on a mighty fine composer, player and singer.

Kieran Dargan

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