93

Tommy Castro: Right as Rain

Ed Kopp By

Sign in to view read count
Originally pegged as the Bay area's answer to Stevie Ray Vaughn, Tommy Castro is an ace guitarist and supremely soulful singer. However, his music is more evocative of Memphis-style soul and roots-rock than Vaughn's Texas blues.

Right As Rain features flaming guitar solos, slick backup vocal choruses, jumping Memphis horns and famous guest stars (McClinton and Dr. John). It's a crossover album sure to garner the artist widespread attention beyond the blues world. Still, this one seems overly slick and a bit too calculated to please the masses.

This same material would have benefited from a live-in-the-studio approach. Instead, we're left with a glossy album that's representative of a disturbing trend in the blues: overproduction.

Castro's great talent rises above the glitzy presentation on a few tracks, such as the soulful "Just a Man" and the jump tune "Callin' San Francisco." Castro voice sounds uncannily like Delbert McClinton's, and we get to compare the two singers side-by-side as Castro and McClinton perform a duet on the Sam and Dave tune "Don't Turn Your Heater Down."

But blues is always more soulful when it's raw, and to these ears Right as Rain is mostly overcooked. The horns sound as if they were processed through a machine.

My final assessment: Right As Rain is not without soul, but it would have benefited from a bit less engineering.

| Record Label: Blind Pig Records | Style: Blues


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "The Inner Spectrum of Variables" CD/LP/Track Review The Inner Spectrum of Variables
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 25, 2016
Read "The Invariant" CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 17, 2017
Read "The Whistle Blower" CD/LP/Track Review The Whistle Blower
by Tyran Grillo
Published: May 23, 2016
Read "On Ceremony" CD/LP/Track Review On Ceremony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 17, 2016
Read "Flowers" CD/LP/Track Review Flowers
by John Sharpe
Published: November 23, 2016
Read "The Expensive Train Set" CD/LP/Track Review The Expensive Train Set
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 5, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!