The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Steve Creedy

Keep­ing the Horse Between Me and the Ground Sea­sick Steve There’s a Dead Skunk Sea­sick Steve’s hobo blues per­sona has taken an­other beat­ing from a new bi­og­ra­phy that sug­gests much of it is fabri­ca­tion. The bi­og­ra­phy, by Matthew Wright, claims Sea­sick’s name is not Steve Wold but Steve Leach, and he was born a decade later than claimed. Nor is he a strug­gling blue-col­lar sa­vant who honed his skill ram­bling though the back­roads of Amer­ica. Ac­cord­ing to Wright, he cut his mu­si­cal teeth in Shanti, an Indo-Amer­i­can band ded­i­cated to transcendental med­i­ta­tion, be­fore mov­ing into disco and then a Beach Boys splin­ter band started by Mike Love. Not that you would ever tell that lis­ten­ing to the blues player’s eighth al­bum. Those fa­mil­iar raw, ad­dic­tive riffs are there on songs such as the ti­tle track, Walkin’ Blues and Gypsy Blues, along­side el­e­ments of coun­try and folk. There’s a Bobby Gen­try feel to Bulls­eye and the coun­try mood is ac­cen­tu­ated with the brash Grass is Greener. The emo­tive bal­lad Ship­wreck Love, with its mourn­ful vi­o­lin and mov­ing lyrics, leans to­wards folk and sees Wold ex­tend his vo­cal range. Disc two is an al­la­cous­tic set and sur­pris­ingly (or per­haps not) in­cludes cov­ers such as Gen­tle on My Mind and Hank Wil­liams’s I’m So Lone­some I Could Cry. Wold’s of­ten gritty voice takes on a Dy­lanesque qual­ity on Hard Knocks and holds up well on his re­laxed ver­sion of Ev­ery­body’s Talkin’. How­ever, the col­lec­tion is let down by a lack of va­ri­ety, other than some jaunty banjo on South­ern Bis­cuit, the lyrics of which ap­pear to be a recipe.

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