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Eric Clapton

Old Sock

Eric Clapton
3
With the careers of the surviving '60s rock giants now surpassing the five-decade mark, it's getting harder to imagine what continues to motivate them. Eric Clapton is a perfect example; he's an artist blessed with immense talent who, nonetheless, never appeared content. However, since overcoming his well-publicized drug and alcohol addictions, and solidifying his status as one of Britain's richest musicians, Clapton has fallen into a pattern driven by nostalgia: briefly reuniting Cream, touring with old pals Steve Winwood and Jeff Beck, and collaborating with key influences such as B.B. King and J.J. Cale. All of that has generated far more excitement than the solo work Clapton released in the meantime, and the weight of his legacy likewise bogs down Old Sock, a pleasant, but ultimately uninspired collection that ranges from country and folk standards such as "Born to Lose" and "Goodnight Irene" to the classic jazz of "All Of Me" and "Our Love is Here to Stay." This is Clapton at his most "serious," showing that his musical ability has evolved far beyond merely being able to crank out searing guitar solos. Yet, at some point along the way, Clapton lost his identity. It's ironic, really, considering his greatest inspiration — Robert Johnson — reputedly sold his soul to the devil; Clapton, it seems, has sold his soul to something else, potentially far more terrifying. (Surfdog)
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