Dylan Wicken's has put together another choice CD, 'Fall Down Go Boom', and it further signals his ongoing drift away from blues rock toward a definite swinging sound. It's those cool nostalgia-based instrumentals backed up by the blaring sax of Flip Townson that set the overall tone, a clarion call to just put on your dancing shoes, dress up in your best outfit, and have a good old time.
"Bumble Bee Bop" is a self-penned, old-fashioned rock 'n' roll instrumental that opens things up and gives a hint of what's in store, namely plenty of reverb-drenched fretwork and heaving saxophone. Dylan also tosses a bouquet in the direction of Rick Holmstrom--an acknowledged master of the West Coast sound and ex-Rod Piazza guitarist--on the quirky "Lookout Holmes". Fittingly, "Two Bones and A Pick", the close-out instrumental, is a cover of a tune that's a hallmark of the sophisticated rhythm and blues guitar of maestro T-Bone Walker. Preceding it is another T-Bone classic, and probably his most famous vocal, "The Hustle Is On".
Dylan's own "Jump To Me Baby", is a pure bopper. Jivers with beehive hairdos or duck-style haircuts are advised to put on lots of hairspray or grease just prior to putting their boogying shoes on. Another green light to commence partying is "Tree's Blues"--a swinging almost jazzy instro that cuts to the chase with its frenzied energy. It reminded me, at times, of an adrenaline-inducing track from Danny Gatton's ground-breaking CD '88 Elmira St.' (.nb an absolute must-have for any guitar freak) with its wired wildness and sax mania.
There's also a refreshingly different take on Albert King's "Crosscut Saw", featuring some interesting rumba-friendly rhythms. I also took a hankering to "Enough", an updated and more fleshed-out version of a cut originally featured on Dylan's debut CD 'Shuffle This'.
Fleshing out the DW Band is the highly competent rhythm section of Harpo on bass and Greg Cooper on drums. The only place to nitpick is the predictable vocals of Wickens, but all in all, this remains a solid CD with many memorable moments. And one well worth your time to order by visiting him online at "www.dwproject.tv".
'Fall Down Go Boom' is an important stepping stone for Dylan Wickens, who is at the front of the pack of up-and-coming guitarists on the Canadian blues scene.
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