Devon Allman review 02-12-13…

DEVON ALLMAN

TURQUOISE

RUF RECORDS

WHEN I LEFT HOME–DON’T SET ME FREE–TIME MACHINE–STOP DRAGGIN MY HEART AROUND–THERE ‘S NO TIME–STRATEGY–HOMESICK–INTO THE DARKNESS–KEY LIME PIE–YADIRA’S LULLABY–TURN OFF THE WORLD

 

We had the great fortune to meet Devon Allman at Grimey’s Record Store back in May of 2012 as he, Cyril Neville, and Mike Zito were doing an in-store performance in support of their Royal Southern Brotherhood album.  He told us then that he was working on a solo CD, and t has now come to fruition.  “Turquoise,” on the Ruf Records label, is ten originals and one cover that showcase Devon’s immense talents, drawing from his lifelong love of music, which is literally a part of his DNA, given that he is indeed the son of Gregg Allman.   Growing up, however, he chose not to use his famous surname to get ahead in the biz, but, as he’s matured, his unbelieveable talents meant that his bloodline had to surface, and these songs are reflections of his last few decades of forging his own musical identity, and are full of stories only Devon can tell.

Joining him are Yonrico Scott (from the RSB) on drums, and Myles Weeks on bass.  The set kicks off with the autobiographical “When I Left Home,” with Luther Dickinson playing the part of Uncle Duane with some great slide leads.  Devon sounds like a young Tom Petty on his jangly “Don’t Set Me Fee,” with organ from Rick Steff, and then again on a waaay cool duet with Samantha Fish on “Stop Draggin  My Heart Around.”

Anyone familiar with the vintage sound of the Allman Brothers knows they had an affinity for mixing jazz progressions in with their Southern blues-rock, and Devon also has that love for Latin and African polyrhythms on this set.  Check out the Latin-tinged tales of “getting away from it all with my little slice of Key Lime Pie,” and the set-closing powerhouse, “Turn Off The World,” where Devon longs for a simpler place, a place to cleanse his soul, and “wash away some of that rock and roll.”

These are all good, but we had one favorite.  On “Time Machine,” Devon uses a jazzy background to wish himself back to a simpler time, when “the only Apples we had grew on trees.”

Devon Allman has crafted a brilliant debut that shows he’s carving his own niche in the music world, and let’s hope “Turquoise” is a harbinger of many good things to come!   Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

 

 

 

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