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Larry Miller - 'On The Edge' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/cd/de/76/2278_larrymillerontheedge_1339265554.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 09, 2012    
 
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A decent addition to my blues collection.

I remember during the onset of grunge, in the early 90s, that I went through something of a blues phase. I guess with melodic rock being as popular as a pork sausage at a vegetarian banquet and my Seattle tastes rather limited I needed something else to take up my hours and days of musical energies. I'd hardly class myself as a blues authority but through a string of concerts I at least managed to sate my AOR cravings. I was actually quite taken with the likes of Jeff Healey, Robert Cray, Gary Moore and Walter Trout despite the genre limitations and found them to take on an extra dimension in the live environment.

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Though 'On The Edge' is Larry Miller's seventh release I have never heard of him. Admittedly my musical tastes don't stretch as far as blues these days and I have never even heard Joe Bonamassa CD so maybe I need to open myself up a little more. Miller’s reputation has been cemented over the past few years due to festival appearances, touring and radio sessions for the BBC. I was unsure what to expect when I first played the CD and first impressions were of 'blues by numbers'. The tortured vocals, scales and extended solos are all in place and of course on more than one occasion his baby 'been and gone and done him wrong'. There are elements of latter day Gary Moore and Walter Trout which is no bad thing but, to me, it all comes across as predictable and safe. I'm sure that most genres of music fall into this category at the best of times so maybe I'm doing Larry Miller something of an injustice. The uptempo and mid-tempo workouts such as 'Road Runner' and 'Reel Me In' are balanced by lengthier moody pieces including 'The Wrong Name' and ‘We Should Be One' and actually, after a few spins, it wasn't grating on me as half as much. The bio states that he plays Gibson Les Paul, Fender Stratocaster and Telecaster guitars and the tone throughout is very pleasing. The vocals are not particularly strong and some of the solos are a bit sloppy yet I imagine they would sound way better live with a 'warts n all' attitude and approach.

'On The Edge' is not going to make me rush out to bolster my blues collection but it is a decent addition to those CDs I already have on my shelf.

Dave Bott

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