Baton Rouge, LA. native/guitarist Benoit, 34, has carved a modest but noteworthy niche by pumping down-home blues and Swampy Cajun riffs through an electric guitar and coming up with something beyond the Delta, but not quite embedded in the Chicago blues idiom. Although not a flashy or astounding guitar technician, Benoit takes a consistent, earnest approach to his music-both onstage and in the studio. With spontaneity as the primary rule, most of his gritty guitar and vocal tracks come together in one or two takes. He developed his repertoire at weddings, local Cajun festivals and rock 'n' roll gigs, then moved to New Orleans and signed with Justice Records. A few of his tracks have made it to prime time television, including episodes of Northern Exposure, Melrose Place and Party of Five.
Highlights consist of a sweet cover of this author as well as Stevie Ray Vaughan's favorite tune by Albert Collins "Don't Lose Your Cool," Hank William's "Jambalaya" and Willie Dixon's "Twenty Nine Ways (To My Baby's Door)." Musicians playing on the CD include Allyn Robinson (drums), David Lee Watson (bass), Marc Adams (piano, B3 organ) and Benoit (electric and acoustic guitars, vocals). Benoit and Company breaks no new ground here, but overall an enjoyable CD.
This review is copyright © 2000 by Matt Alcott, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved.