Gary Moore Old New Ballads Blues

Gary Moore has had anything but a consistent career but this is his best album since 1990’s Still Got the Blues. From stints in Skid Row, Thin Lizzy, Colosseum II and his own bands, Moore has flirted with metal to rock and back again but he has had his greatest success with his readings of the blues, a self-professed and dedicated disciple of the Peter Green school — right down to his vintage ’59 Les Paul. Old New Ballads Blues finds Moore in his element once again, mixing old covers by Elmore James, Otis Rush and Willie Dixon with new songs by his own pen. His vocals have matured greatly and a rendition of Dixon’s "You Know My Love” builds nicely, augmented by a full-blown horn section, until crashing over the top with a patented, impassioned solo. Yet, as good as the covers are, nothing can prepare you for his own instrumental "Cut It Out,” followed by an equally blistering "No Reason to Cry” that redefines the power of his soloing. It’s the sound you wish would go on forever, crying down with pain as only an Irish bluesman can. Stirring, satisfying stuff. (Eagle)