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Hugo Race and Michelangelo Russo /AUS, IT/
One doesn´t have to be a smart cookie to notice that Hugo Race, a well-known psychedelic ´darkist´, whom we have already met twice at BLUES ALIVE with different projects (2001 and 2012) has a liking for bluesman John Lee Hooker. It is not even necessary to know that he put a cover of Hooker´s song Send Me Your Pillow right on his third album Second Revelator. A great deal of Race´s music, in fact, is closely related to Hooker, which of course, doesn´t mean that Race shamelessly steals from him - it is simply a kind of mutual tuning. So it isn´t much of a surprise that Race and his fellow from The True Spirit, harmonica player Michelangelo Russo (also a successful fine artist) have now made a whole Hookerish album - especially when we commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth this year.

Conservative Hooker´s fans may be a bit surprised to see how the duo handled the most as well as less famous bluesman´s songs. It all happened during one day and one night in soundman Boris Wilsdorf´s Berlin studio Einstürzende Neubauten. And these recordings are probably the most psychedelic among those which bear Race´s signature. Hallucinogenic sounds of looped guitars and harmonicas, delayed vocals, various industrial and ambiently sounding noises, but at the same time somewhere deep the typical Hookerish uninterruptible current of a ´never-ending boogie´. Sound dirt intersects here with crystal purity. ´Hooker´s today´s world´ is exactly like this, at least in Race and Russo´s interpretation. Their live performance is surely gonna be an exceptional experience.

 

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