Hot Roux review…May 30, 2017….

HOT ROUX

HOMETOWN BLUES

HI HAT ENTERTAINMENT   HHE 7252

DON’T WANNA TALK ABOUT LOVE–DELLA BE MY BABY–WOMAN YOU HAUNT ME–DOWN AND OUT–MISERY MISERY–ONE MORE TRAIN–I HEAR’M TALK’N–CAN’T SEE–RENT PARTY BOOGIE–WHAT A LIE–WAKE UP SLIM

We had the great pleasure to review the debut album from Ventura, CA’s favorite sons, Hot Roux, a while back.  They are back with eleven more strong originals, this one entitled “Hometown Blues,” for Hi Hat Entertainment.

Jerry McWorter is once again on drums, vocals, and producer detail, with Brent Harding on bass.  Those two do the songwriting, and, as you listen, you can see why they named this band Hot Roux.  As with any good Louisiana roux, you gotta mix the right spices, butter, and flour.  These guys have that varied, eclectic, genre’-defying sound that literally runs from Memphis thru Stax and Sun, on deep down into the Delta,  thru the swamps of Excello to the Big Easy.

If that ain’t enough to whet your appetite, there are more guitar players on this set than you can shake a stick at, including Paris Slim Goldwasser, Ed Berghoff, Kyle Jester, Johnny Main, and Jon Lawton.  They start the ruckus off right, with a cool rocker titled “Don’t Wanna Talk About Love,” with R J Mischo on the harp.  “Della Be My Baby” has a sweet Delta-meets-the-Big-Easy groove, with slide from Paris Slim and Jerry’s second-line drumming, while “Down And Out” is pure classic Stax.

You can’t have a blues album of this stature without a “train” song and a “my baby left me” song.  Well, the sparsely-arranged “One More Train” fills that bill!  “Can’t See” is a humorous, loping slice of blues-rock that finds Jerry bemoaning his dependency on “glasses from the 99-cent store,” while R J again nails the harp on the rhumba-roll of “What A Lie.”

We had two favorites, too.  They jump all over that swampy Excello groove with a sax-filled romp called “Rent Party Boogie!”  And, there’s nothin’ quite like a good, Fifties-inspired ballad from a band who can do it right, and, “Woman You Haunt Me” woulda won the Wurlitzer prize on any jukebox from back in the day, and Carl Sonny Leyland’s honky-tonkin’ piano just adds to the authenticity.

Hot Roux are as eclectic as they come, crossing boundaries and genres’ with ease, and loving every minute of it!  “Hometown Blues” will take you on a sweet musical journey into their world, where there are no rules–just great blues!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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