Glaswegian bluesman releases his inner Atlas to take the weight of the world and let it roll down the alley of love.
Once the Nimmo brothers unchained their on-stage bond – temporarily one should think – their output doubled, since both Alan and Stevie have stayed the course, but while the younger sibling flexes a heavier muscle with KING KING, the older demonstrates more nuanced approach. Stevie’s 2010 solo debut “The Wynds of Life” was an acoustic affair, and its successor has some ruminative spots, too, alongside robust blues numbers.
This contrast a tension-builder, just as the album’s title marrying menace to promise is, there’s a whole gamut of emotions in the squeal and almost orchestral riff of opener “Chains Of Hope” whose heaviness and call-and-response pack a powerful punch to ram that title home for “Still Hungry” to ramp up the momentum way down the line. Such precarious disposition is reinforced with the risk-taking insistence of the transparent ballad “Gambler’s Roll” and the throbbing march of “Roll The Dice Again” where handclaps help propel Nimmo’s six-string to the brink of desperation, but “Walk The Thin Line” is a sun-kissed slice of Americana, its zone of bliss reflected in “Lovin’ Might Do Us Good” – joyous and graceful piece of wonderment.
So it’s not a sad record, as “Change” suggests early on with its soft funk and slinky wah-wah under Stevie’s mellifluous voice, although the infectious pop chorus of “I’ll Pray For You” takes in a few sorrowful strains. Nimmo’s trio proving to be vigorous and sensual in equal measure, there’s a balance to guarantee that heaven won’t crumble on earth, because it’s as good below as above: a solid work.