Five years after his solo debut, "In Here Tonight," Tenry Johns has released his follow up album. The personnel have changed a little, although the balance is still the same (lead and rhythm guitars, bass, drums and horns), and the album is dedicated to the late Bob Crane who played lead guitar on "In Here Tonight."
The album opens in fine style with "Rockin' With The Rocker," a terrific funky number. It is so nice to hear a real horn section on tunes like this, where Johns' vocals sound at times a little like Nathaniel Mayer. The band keep the dance mood going with another cracking tune, "I Swear I'll Never Leave You," before shifting into a more bluesy vein for a couple of numbers.
Even though the album was recorded in two parts, at different studios, using different line-ups, you would be hard pushed to hear the joins. All of the musicians are in top form throughout, and Johns has a very flexible delivery that allows him to almost spit and snarl on tunes like "Why Are You Doing Me Like That," and then mellow out for the positively laid back "I Need Your Love."
The production is very clean throughout, and you can hear all the individual contributions to the band's overall sound without too much extra effort. Co-producer (along with Johns) Larry Kucera obviously deserves some credit here, and deserves plaudits for his guitar playing too, which is particularly noteworthy on "Playing Blues Every Day and Night" and the ensuing closer, "I'm Only Being Me," which rounds things off in style.
"Need Your Love" shows that Tenry Johns has moved upwards and onwards in the fiver years since he recorded his debut album. This time around everything seems that bit tighter, and Johns comes across as a man with a clear vision of where he is going. Anyone who likes their blues to be a bit funky will find that it does not get much better than "Need Your Love."