Minimal, but deathlessly poetic, the likes of the freewheeling [B]'Goin' Down South'[/B] and the charring [B]'Snake Drive'[/B] are so viciously repetitive, so efficient, you see where [a]Can[/a] bo

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London W1 Wag Club

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London W1 Wag Club

Sat on a stool, effortlessly breaking into groove after groove of Delta bluesology, RL Burnside is still enjoying the fruits of his collaboration with [a]Jon Spencer[/a] on the ‘A Ass Pocket Of Whiskey’ LP a few years back. You get the feeling that the wilds of Mississippi are dripping with bourbon bards like Burnside, waiting for someone to deliver them from obscurity to this new audience. But the venue tonight is heaving, and not just with bookish blues aficionados and Blooze Exploshun completists.

Burnside amiably welcomes the crowd and then immediately launches into the first of the night’s pulsing boogie breaks, coursing with the untouchable, hot-blooded fever which has forever been the template of the hungriest rock’n’roll. Minimal, but deathlessly poetic, the likes of the freewheeling ‘Goin’ Down South’ and the charring ‘Snake Drive’ are so viciously repetitive, so efficient, you see where Can borrowed all their tight-ass licks from, while RL‘s take on John Lee Hooker‘s ‘Boogie Chillun’ is so sharp and fiery it slaps you awake to the fact that this is anything other than a dry history lesson.

Live, the nasss-tay humour Burnside is rightly (in)famous for is somewhat lost; little worry, as his burnt-oak vocals and sinewy funk are entertainment enough. Play more blues, punk!