December 09, 1996 12:00 PM

Mike Henderson & the Bluebloods

If an army rides on its stomach, a band rides on its rhythm section. When the combination of piano, bass, drums and electric guitar is as neck-snappingly strong as it is on the Bluebloods’ first album, you don’t need other instruments, original compositions or even many original ideas to deliver a knockout blow. Whipping through blues bombshells like Hound Dog Taylor’s “Give Me Back My Wig” and Elmore James’s “Mean Mis-treater,” Henderson—a 43-year-old Missourian who is as raspingly good on harmonica as he is on slide guitar—and his Nashville cats don’t even try to reinvent rocking roadhouse boogaloo. With Reese Wynans popping the ivories and Glenn Worf and John Gardner firing on bass and drums like a single well-oiled weapon, the Bluebloods make the familiar trajectories of the blues glow like tracer bullets in the night. (Dead Reckoning)

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