Acoustic Guitar

Joe Bonamassa – Driving Towards The Daylight – CD review

Joe Bonamassa
Driving Towards The Daylight
Provogue Records – Out Now

Joe Bonamassa never seems to stop working these days. If it’s not touring or guesting on other artist’s projects, then Joe will usually be found sweating it out producing another group of songs for his ever growing legion of fans. This album (Joe’s thirteenth studio outing) consists of an eleven track selection and features, once again a wide variety of songs and to be expected a group of brilliant musicians backing Joe up. Like the start of any recording process, the task of recruiting a group of musicians must have been difficult. and in order to move Joe slightly out of his comfort zone for this release, an eclectic group of musicians was put together.
Brad Whitford of Aerosmith needs no introduction. South African Guitarist Blondie Chaplin who has gigged worldwide and most notably with The Stones, David Johansen and Paul Butterfield. Pat Thrall also plays Guitar on the recording along with Whitford’s son Harrison. Drummer Anton Fig who appears nightly on the David Letterman show but also is much in demand as one of the world’s top session musicians. Other recruited players include Arlan Schierbaum and Jeff Bova on the Keyboards, Michael Rhodes and Carmine Rojas on the Bass. 
The opener Dislocated Boy starts with an organ intro and grooves along nicely. The song one of four written by Joe himself seems to be a little bit autobiographical with Joe singing of “having the blues since I was six years old…”. The second song Stones In My Passway is a very, very old blues standard written by non other than Robert Johnson himself, and given a slightly funky intro which then turns into a real rock steady number punctuated by Joe’s slide. You need to listen to this song a number of times to really appreciate what Joe can actually do with a guitar.
The album’s title track is next and Driving Towards The Daylight is a really mellow number about life on the road. It’s the second song on the album written by Joe and this is the sort of song that would grace any early morning car journey. It’s very atmospheric and evokes images of sunrises and white lines in a rear view mirror. I would like to see this song snapped up for a movie soundtrack somewhere in the future.

DTTD cover art

I Got All You Need penned by Willie Dixon is another worthy entry on this platter. A straight forward shuffle with a lot of punch and very fine it is too. I’m sure this will be stage favourite this year getting the sell out crowds going. When I hear strong blues covers like this one Joe loves to do, it just gets my imagination fired up and I can just see Joe doing a duet of this song with Stevie Ray. It’s just got that kind balls to the wall made to be big sort of sound.
I got bread for you when you get hungry, I got water for you when you run dry, I got good times when you get lonesome, I got heaven before you die. I got all you need.

A Place In My Heart is song number six on the record. This song is written by Bernie Marsden who songwriting credibility is extremely high having played a large contribution to the success of Whitesnake in their finest period. The song is beautifully executed and Joe’s playing is really of the finest order here. 

Joe at Blackpool

So without giving the total story away, this album is really fine and it pricked my ears up right from the start. Joe is building his fanbase very quickly now and seeing him in smaller venues is getting really hard as the months pass by.  Joe will probably be working just as hard in the coming years as he has up to now as he just seems to have that energy that seems to pass many artists by as they stroll through an album every couple of years. 

You can feel from the music on show that Joe really cares about what he gives his fans and he is just in love with the music refusing to compromise of any sort of quality.  Kevin Shirley always gets the best out of Joe come rain, come shine.

There are two editions of this album out certainly for UK release. One of these, handsome as it is, is fairly standard. The other is an all singing, all dancing affair and a more worthy edition of an artist of rapidly advancing prestige. The standard edition is found on Provogue PRD 7369 2. The deluxe edition is Provogue PRD 7370 2. Buy the deluxe edition as soon as you can as this contains an intro (visual and written) into a number of Joe’s great guitars and how he acquired them. Including some really funny storys about where they were bought. It’s a real step up from the standard edition and if you want something that’s truly collectible, then this is the edition for you.

So if you fancy helping Joe to a UK number one album tomorrow, buy this album. If you fancy ready some really cool stories and looking at some great pictures of guitars, buy the album. But, most of all buy the album because it’s a great example of an exceptional music by a hugely talented artist on the rise who seems still to be heading towards a peak which is still somewhere far away.

To get a free download of the title track of this album use this link: 

To follow the reality TV series “Driving Towards The Daylight” on YouTube starring Joe as he prepares to release his 13th studio album “Driving Towards The Daylight” follow this link:
To follow all things Joe Bonamassa, go to:
 Many thanks to Peter Noble & Will Taylor of Noble PR for the images and the music. Cheers! See what Noble PR do here
Rob Pope
Guitarist TV



June 2nd, 2012

No Comments

Comments are closed.