Graham Bonnet 2015
Marble-throated belter gets back in line to call the shots and move forward.
It seems to have been difficult for this singer to surround himself with sympathetic players who’d pump his creative juices without shaking the ground all around, but now Graham Bonnet has found terra firma to build his castles on. The veteran’s casting a glance back on his new group’s debut single, as the muscular, belligerent “The Mirror Lies” switches to the rhythm-and-blues jive that Bonnet’s so brilliant with, and Eric Ragno’s piano loosens its sonic knot while the Blake-inspired imagery lingers on.
And then there’s the title track, penned by Russ Ballard whose songs Bonnet’s been giving a hard edge for more than three decades, although none of those was so heroic as to sway from calm into the storm. Yet soon after Derek Sherinian’s ivories plateau gets swept with Beth-Ami Heavenstone’s bass and Conrado Pesinato’s guitar wave, the good-time rocking shoots through the dramatically pulsing lines that usher in the most welcome elation. Paradise-bound, here’s a life-affirming, if heavy, heartbeat on these tracks. Having guested on everyone’s record, Graham Bonnet’s finally at home now.