Baptist Town, by the Mike Eldred Trio, is an album that was birthed in the town where Robert Johnson was murdered. As the story goes Eldred took his daughter on a road trip through the south and decided to make a stop at the place where Johnson took his last breath. What he saw inspired and disturbed him, and the record that resulted from that experience is planted firmly in the delta soil. The album cover photo of a weathered shotgun shack sets the tone for the music that follows.
Canadian Paul Reddick’s latest release, Ride the One, hits like a punch in the throat from the first note. It is blues rock as a primal roar, as spooky as a condemned house, as visceral and chilling as a Stephen King novel. Reddick’s voice howls on the lead track “Shadows,” decidedly sinister, and more frightening than Lon Chaney staring at a full moon. Coupled with a desperate aural assault on blues harp, the song is as close to a major cardiac event as you can get.
J.M. McSpadden III is a writer and roots music enthusiast who believes every road trip is an opportunity for the full- tilt boogie.