Fab Tone 2013
How blue can one get? Indefinitely, when the blues are so soulful.
To be inventive while operating in one of the most conservative music forms is symptomatic of a great talent, and this ace axeman has it in spades. Enough to not rest on the laurels laid on him with the release of 2012’s "Radiogram" and to carry on. “Fistful Of Blues”, a four-track EP, doesn’t picks up where its longplay predecessor left off but strips the music of any polish and goes for the genre’s natural roughness in the most poignant way.
The sweet pain hangs in the rarefied, heartbreaking elegance of “On The Borderline”, where familiar lyrical tropes take on a new meaning with the help of Gwyn’s talking guitar, and “When You’re Alone” that builds on Peter Green’s “Looking For Somebody” and follows its DNA back to Chess and forward to Gary Moore – without ever copying any of them but paying respect to all of Ashton’s heroes in his own style. With the live-in-a-studio maintained throughout, especially in the rhythm section department, he applies different approaches to his songs. Thus, the slide-kissed Chicago shuffle of “Take You Home Tonight” gains swing as it flows on the voice-and-twang unison only to switch to the sparse emotional and sonic overdrive, and the Texan heat of “Waiting For The Day” roars yet never fulfils its explosive potential, keeping the listener exactly in the place its title suggests.
And that’s exactly the place to be until the guitarist delivers another album… Although “Fistful Of Blues” is much more full-bloodied than many a full-length record.