Bend in the Road
Bend in the Road CD
Bend in the Road Double LP:
April 21, 2012: International Record Store Day Release of Bend in the Road, Special Double LP.
"Bend in the Road" review from Clive Rawlings, "Blues Matters": Inside is a collection of songs that come from Spencer's love of the blues. It's an intimate journey but one that will connect profoundly and repeatedly with listeners. Having shared the Mac spotlight for years with Peter Green, here he is happy to do the same with Brett Lucas, a young Detroit guitarist who co-produced and whose band lends sterling support. Throughout this absorbing album are influences from Spencer's life. His take on Elmore James's "Cry For Me Baby", "Stranger Blues", "The Sun Is Shining" and opener "Homesick" (credited to Elmore James' cousin) are all sublime. Compositions from the sixties to modern day such as "Whispering Fields" (a beautiful instrumental), "Earthquake" (inspired by Eddie Cochrane's style) "Aphrodite" (painting a musical picture) sit firmly with "I Walked a Mile With Sorrow" (based on a poem by Robert Browning) and "Secret Sorrow (a Longfellow quote). "Jambo", as the title suggests, finds the band jamming on an old-time swing vibe. Spencer imitates the sound of trumpet/sax A la Louis Armstrong while Brett contributes nifty guitar work. "Refugees" is a re-work of an old 1978 song originally called "Flee". "Merciful Sea" is self-explanatory and the title track was inspired by an obscure, possibly Indian poet called Praveen. Without sounding dated, this collection is a career culmination of a dying technique, emotive, spiritually driven and well worthy of owning. Highly recommended.