Album, Single and EP Reviews



  Live at Blues Alley by Melanie Mason

Live at Blues Alley cover art

Artist: Melanie Mason
Title: Live at Blues Alley
Catalogue Number: No catalogue number
Review Format: CD
Release Year: 2005

This live set comprises a mixture of self-penned material and cover versions in more-or-less equal measure, and in "Crave" starts with a truly excellent track - a wonderfully sensuous, tingly blues number that easily stands comparison with any from the genres output that year.  And therein lies the problem, nothing else really matches up with this outstanding opener written by the woman herself.

Everything else seems to suffer in comparison with the aforementioned opener, although further inspection reveals that the other songs of note are also written by Melanie, including "Gospel by the River" and "Love's Slow Burn".  The remainder of the set is made up of a number of covers from such diverse sources as Hendrix ("Castles Made of Sand"), Robert Johnson ("Crossroads") and the permanently 'sunglassed' Bono ("When Love Comes to Town").  All solidly performed by Melanie and her tight-knit band, however they seem lack the impact of her own material which better suits her gritty delivery.

As a minimum, you should set about acquiring the excellent "Crave", worth the admission price on its own!
Review Date: June 21 2007