The boogie, ever since John Lee Hooker created it during the late 1940s in Detroit, has been a timeless thing. So it is that this bunch of players from southern California plugged in their jug band and started playing the rolling, loose-limbed blues they loved so much on their John Lee Hooker records.
If Canned Heat-formed in 1966 in Los Angeles-were a new band today, it would be part of the H.O.R.D.E. festival. As it is, the group continues; though without original frontman Bob "Bear" Hite and Al "Blind Owl" Wilson, it returns as if coming back to the mothership for a bit of boogie nourishment. Gathering around the microphone and soundboard this time is Robert Lucas, Adolfo "Fito" de la Parra, Larry "The Mole" Taylor and Greg Kage, along with a host of special guests including Michael Finnigan, Javier Batiz and Rob Rio. But noticeably absent from the session is guitar slinger Junior Watson.
On "Boogie 2000," which was recorded over a three month span in Van Nuys, Calif., Canned Heat travels back to the sounds of their classic 1970 album "Future Blues," which was filled with numerous John Lee Hooker, Howlin' Wolf and Sonny Boy Williamson II (Aleck Ford) phrasing and licks and influenced such legendary bands as the Grateful Dead, Fabulous Thunderbirds and Blues Traveler.
This review is copyright © 2000 by Matt Alcott, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved.