On a first listen, JJ Grey & Mofro – ‘This River’, didn’t catch my attention, however I was trying to do 10 other things at once so I decided to put time aside & give this album the time & attention it deserves.
I was soon questioning myself as to why I hadn’t been instantly hooked once I was listening to the “riff-based Southern rock, cold-blooded swamp funk & sly Memphis soul”.
With a relatively even split of up-beat, funky, soulful & ballad tracks on the album, you are likely to find at least a few numbers that tickle your fancy on listening.
The track that caught my attention like no other was the title track, This River. Grey’s seductive voice has the ability to draw you into every word making you take note of the music, lyrics & really stirring emotions within. It leaves the listener wanting more of this real, soulful music.
The range of tracks on the album helps to keep things interesting & I can’t deny I enjoy the funkier/bluesy numbers, each track deservedly has it’s place on the album. However, I would choose The Ballad of Larry Webb as another favourite of mine due to the gritty edge in Grey’s voice. The ballads really roused my emotions due to the vocals playing such a key part in these tracks.
Despite all of this, Your Lady, She’s Shady, was the track left stuck in my mind after several listens due to it’s catchy chorus & funky rhythm.
I recommend you take a listen & enjoy this buffet of music. I challenge you to not be singing along or moved by at least one of the tracks!
This River is available to pre-order from Proper Music
Review by Emma Baldwin