JT Coldfire: "Always & Never " (USA/Sverige 2011)
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1) Toast to a Bluesman
2) King Bee [James Moore]
3) Rather Die In My Sleep
4) Let's Go For A Drive
5) Get It On (In The Back Of The Bar)
6) It's Alright With Me
7) Tell Me, Mama
8) Tired Man's Blues
9) Feelin the Music
10) Party Lovin Pappa
11) I'm The Best Thing You Ever Had
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"Always & Never" imponerar. Jodå, JT sjunger enormt kraftfullt, och hans gitarrspel gnistrar, ylar och sprakar så gott. "I Would Rather Die In My Sleep" formligen exploderar ut ur högtalarna. Men det tar man för givet när det gäller etablerade artister från Austin.

Nej, vad som verkligen slår mig är hur varierad plattan är. Arvet från SRV finns där så klart, T-Birdsstuket likaså. Men också rykande rock'n'roll i "Get It On" och "Party Lovin' Papa". Och countryrock i "Feeling The Music". Och så vidare. Amerikansk musik helt enkelt. Och när jag hör hur JT modulerar rösten ibland tänker jag: nog diggar han väl Tom Waits? Sa jag förresten att alla låtar utom en är original?


“Get it on (in the Back of the Bar)” starts things off here; it is an upbeat rocker with a Texas feel that will put people on the dance floor. This song has it all, piano, harp and sax. A mid tempo Blues Rocker with harp thrown in is what you will find on “It’s Alright with Me”. “Rather Die in My Sleep” is a slower Blues track that expands the range of JT’s vocals. It has great lyrics, a big time guitar solo along with layering of guitar and harp to make for interesting sound,

“Let’s Go for a Drive” has a Country flavor with a funky groove and nice placement of the female background vocals. When I listen to “Feelin’ the Music” I’m reminded of a song that I can’t quite place, it has kind of a 70s Rock/Pop feel to it. “Toast to a Bluesman” is harp driven with distorted and dirty vocals.

Deep Chicago style slow Blues is what’s on tap with “I’m the Best Thing You Ever Had.” The song asks the question “Why does good love have to hurt so bad?” I’m not sure that is a question that will ever be answered. “Party Lovin Pappa” is an upbeat swinger that has a 50’s rockabilly feel. “Tired Man’s Blues” closes out this CD with some New Orleans Zydeco flavor that is guaranteed to make you shake what the good lord don’t want you to break!

This CD covers a lot of different styles and territory and all of it is very enjoyable. JT Coldfire has toured extensively around the world over the last 15 years. This is the first that I have heard of this singer/songwriter/guitarist and I hope to hear a lot more in the future.

Ron Hoerter with Daniel Schlewitz/Great Northern Blues Society

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#739 in the Series) is JT Coldfire, Always and Never (Crazy Sun Publishing)

The first thing that hits you between the ears when you play the first song from the new JT Coldfire album, Always and Never, is the finely crafted Chuck Berry Inspired “Get it on (In the Back of the Bar)”, a song that grabs your ears and staples them to the speaker. The second thing you quickly realize in listening to the whiskey soaked vocals and the somewhat bawdry lyrics, is that in Coldfire, you are in the process of being introduced to a pure and genuine “diamond in the rough” musical find, who adds some much needed “hair on the chest” testosterone to a musical landscape that is full of auto-tune, sampling, and electronica artists that are generally void of the type of passionate rock and roll soul that is presented on this excellent album.

A 20 year in the making road weary overnight success, this Austin hill country based artist has earned a solid guitar-slinger reputation by virtue of his constant touring, marathon schedule (sometimes playing up to three shows a day) and his incendiary playing that mixes Chuck Berry, Freddie King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Buddy Guy, into a slinky blues-boogie gumbo with a Muddy Waters roux.

Despite being recorded in Sweden, the album is all sawdust and peanut shells, blood on the floor, American bar-perfect in its lyrical content, style and presentation. Always and Never Delivers mind numbing boogie rock on “it’s Alright with Me” on one song, and a slow whisky burn from “Tell Me Mama” on the next, proving Coldfire is an artist that can paint using many palettes. “Feeling the Music” is a marked yet brilliant departure from the blues rock, slow burn pacing of the rest of the set and delivers a Three Dog Night sounding song that if God liked music would easily be a top ten hit. It is that good, a flowing, acoustic, eargasmic treat.

Whether the band is kicking into The Blasters styled “Party Loving Pappa” or strapping in for what is surely the best summer driving song of the year “Let’s Go for a Drive” that features some fine guitar picking alongside perfect harmonica placement, clearly shows that this band of mostly Swedes can honky-tonk with the best of them and have fun along the way.

At the end of the day, this best kept musical secret is a refreshing new voice on the Texas Blues scene. The songwriting, diverse soundscapes, and brilliant guitar work along with the school of hard knocks way he is going about honing his craft should bring his voice to the masses in very short order.

In the meantime I am going to play the heck out of this album, grab a Lone Star, and head to a honky-tonk. I hear there is a great band playing.

– Walt Falconer / Cool Album Of The Day blog


JT Coldfire – Always & Never

by Janet Goodman /Music News Nashville

There might be a comedic, rebel core to Texas bluesman JT Coldfire. In the liner notes of his new album, he writes, “I will always be me and I will never change,” hence the record’s title, “Always & Never.” “[That] has been a mantra for me my entire life. [But]I wasn’t the one sayin it…” People tell him things like, “Why do you always carry that damned guitar with you? You never leave it at home.” Well, at least listeners of his latest will be glad he didn’t leave it at home.

Ten tracks of self-penned, traditional rock-edged blues by this old-soul musician belie his mere 31 years, where his blistering electric guitar work and barroom-right vocals reign. Coldfire opens with a Chuck Berry-homage swagger on “Get It On,” flanked by “It’s Alright With Me” and a lyric boasting with confident, live-in-the-moment values: “Sometimes I like to fight just because I can/Sometimes I like to love and show what kind of man I am/Sometimes I like to play all night way past three/If I don’t live forever it’s alright with me.”

“Rather Die In My Sleep” is a near 5-1/2-minute, meaty rant where he slays with mean blues guitar passages and raging vocals, then takes a 180 with a velvet-smooth and sexy delivery on “Let’s Go For A Drive.” The artist tells us he’s down on his luck, but high on the melodies in “Feelin’ The Music,” and “Toast To A Bluesman” is stellar with a tasty-grooved arrangement. Pure, unadulterated tradition at its bluesy finest is “I’m The Best Thing You Ever Had,” and a wailing harmonica races through the uptempo rockabilly piece, “Party Lovin’ Papa.”

The big surprise here is finding out this CD was recorded in Sweden, with Scandinavian sidemen, but it’s as American as the Austin saloon-singer-slash-guitar-slinger in his black Stetson can be.