91

Rick "L.A. Holmes" Holmstrom: Lookout!

Ed Kopp By

Sign in to view read count
Rick "L.A. Holmes" Holmstrom: Lookout! I went completely nuts over Rick Holmstrom's boogie-woogie version of "Sleigh Ride" on Black Top's Christmas compilation, so I finally went out and purchased his solo CD over the holidays. Man, am I glad I did! This is a rollicking instrumental album with a retro '50s feel. Lookout! is a completely infectious West Coast blues CD with just the right doses of rock 'n roll and swing to kick things up a few notches.

Holmstrom recorded Lookout! in 1995 after he became lead guitarist for Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers. Six of its 16 tracks were previously released on CDs by harmonica man Johnny Dyer, while the rest feature players from Piazza's band.

Credit Holmstrom for underproducing this CD. I'm no sound expert, but there's a raw spontaneity here that differs greatly from the overly slick blues recordings I've been hearing of late. Also credit Holmstrom for keeping the tunes brief, something almost nobody does these days. With the CD's natural feel and concise solos, Holmstrom has taken the very best elements from 1950s blues and made them his own.

Lookout! is great fun. There's barrelhouse boogie ("North of Montana"), Lightin' Hopkins-style guitar licks ("Rub It"), sock-hop rockers ("Hit It"), Latin-tinged blues ("Tacos de Pescado"), ballads ("Maria Cecile"), and Earl Hooker-like guitar-organ groovers ("A Good One"). There's not a weak track on this CD.

With Lookout! Rick "LA. Holmes" Holmstrom joins such guitar luminaries as Ronnie Earl and Freddy King in generating a truly great blues instrumental recording. I hear there's another Holmstrom release on the way, and I shall await it with bated breath.


Title: Lookout! | Year Released: 1999 | Record Label: Black Top


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read BACHanalia CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Hallways CD/LP/Track Review Hallways
by Paul Rauch
Published: June 24, 2017
Read The Crave CD/LP/Track Review The Crave
by John Sharpe
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Chase The Light (Excursions in Soul, Reggae, Funk, and Dub) CD/LP/Track Review Chase The Light (Excursions in Soul, Reggae, Funk, and Dub)
by Joe Gatto
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965 CD/LP/Track Review Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965
by Doug Collette
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Towards Language CD/LP/Track Review Towards Language
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2017
Read "Peace and Love: A Tribute to Will Connell" CD/LP/Track Review Peace and Love: A Tribute to Will Connell
by Troy Dostert
Published: March 28, 2017
Read "Astrometrics" CD/LP/Track Review Astrometrics
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 13, 2017
Read "Shapes" CD/LP/Track Review Shapes
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 6, 2016
Read "Josh At Midnight" CD/LP/Track Review Josh At Midnight
by James Nadal
Published: July 19, 2016
Read "Rub Out The Word" CD/LP/Track Review Rub Out The Word
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 21, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.