Unplugged

JukeBox

Fleetwood Mac - Tusk (1979)

Taking risks  Tusk was not what the average Fleetwood Mac fan expected, certainly not what their record company expected, and possibly not what the four-fifths of the band not named Lindsey Buckingham expected either.   After losing their leader and founder, going through several line-ups and releasing eleven albums, the...

Larkin Poe - Blood Harmony (2022)

The Girls Are Back in Town!  The Lovell girls, Rebecca and Megan,  are back in town with Blood Harmony (November 11, 2022; Tricki-Woo Records) and, as the song goes, if they want to fight you’d better let ‘em!      As always, the Nashville-based duo have...

Bruce Springsteen - Only The Strong Survive (2022)

A Return to Soul No Fender 52 Telecaster, no Fender Esquire, no Les Paul; Bruce Springsteen wanted to make an album where he “just sang” and he achieves that goal on his 21st studio album, Only the Strong Survive (November 11, 2022; Columbia).     But if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find he has done a lot more...

Steely Dan - Can't Buy A Thrill (1972)

The gateway to a fascinating world Donald Fagen and Walter Becker had been trying to make a living out of music for several years, had had a band, had tried their hand as songwriters at the Brill Building and had even been touring musicians for the band Jay & The Americans, but their luck changed when they decided to move to California and...

Johnny Marr - Fever Dreams Pts 1-4 (2022)

Much more than an ex-Smith Fever Dreams Pts. 1-4, Johnny Marr's fourth solo album, proves that he is much more than just the guitarist and main songwriter of the Smiths, and that he has carved out a much more varied career and sound since leaving the legendary band 35 years ago. And this album sounds like Marr all over, not just only the...

Lou Reed - Transformer (1972)

Taking a walk on the wild side with Bowie By the time Lou Reed began recording Transformer, the New Yorker had already fronted the most influential band in history after the Beatles, the Velvet Underground, and had released his first solo album - without anything resembling a hit. So much so, in fact, that the man who would bring him that...

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Return Of The Dream Canteen (2022)

Their Cup Runneth Over    Yes, it’s true: the Red Hot Chili Peppers have followed up their 17-track April release, Unlimited Love, with yet another double album, Return Of The Dream Canteen, (14 October 2022; Warner Records).    The latest 17-tracks are drawn from the same Rick Rubin-produced sessions...

Taylor Swift - Midnights (2022)

Fun and Cryptic DaydreamsTaylor Swift’s Midnights (21 October 2022; Republic Records) is packed full of great hooks, cryptic messages and mad, mad fun.     Take for example the outstanding lead single, Anti-Hero, the video of which Swift made herself. In the song’s representation, she envisages one of her ‘selfs’,...

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - Damn The Torpedoes (1979)

Lucky LosersIn 1979 Tom Petty was on the verge of turning 30 and in the middle of a legal battle with his record company. Even though his second album, You're Gonna Get It, released a year earlier, had sold well, Petty was fed up with opening for other bands and had decided to become a definitive rock star fronting his band, the Heartbreakers. The...

Marcus King - Young Blood (2022)

Being Creative with the BluesBlues prodigy Marcus King has been very open about his dark moments, but he has used his personal challenges to make his lyrics more relatable on his outstanding second album, Young Blood (26 August 2022/ American Records/Republic).     And the guitar maestro quickly saw a reward on his...

Motorhead - Ace Of Spades (1980)

Putting the pedal to the metal By 1980 Motörhead had not only perfected their sound thanks to their two albums of the previous year, Bomber and Overkill, but they had also finally found success, after walking that long way to the top that AC/DC talked about. Lemmy Kilmister and his band occupied a strange space between heavy metal and punk,...

Buddy Guy - The Blues Don't Lie (2022)

Still Making Blues HistoryBuddy Guy, now 86, has had the blues in his blood since he first picked cotton as a boy in Louisiana and made his own guitar with a couple of scraps of farm wire and a piece of wood. When he was 21 he famously travelled north to Chicago with not much more than his guitar, and met with Muddy Waters, to develop his unique...

Kirk Hammett - Portals (2022)

Off The Leash! There was a time when guitarist Kirk Hammett was forbidden by his band, Metallica, from playing particular solos. But that time has now gone and, with Portals (24 June 2022; Blackened), Hammett is now off his leash and forging his own shred-laden path!    “When someone does a side project, it takes away...

B.B. King - Completely Well (1969)

Opening the doors of success When, on 24 and 25 June 1969, B.B. King recorded his album Completely Well at the Hit Factory studio in New York, the greatest guitarist in the history of blues was 43 years old and had a 25-year career in which he had managed to place 29 songs in the Top 20 of the R&B charts but not a single one in the pop...

Liam Gallagher - Cmon You Know (2022)

Songs for an Endless Summer On Saturday 4th June Liam Gallagher returned to Knebworth to present his latest number 1 solo album, C’Mon You Know (27 May 2022; Warner), and feel the love from his huge audience. A lot of water – and bad blood - has passed under the bridge since he last played here with his brother Noel, but he now seems to be...

Ozzy Osbourne - Patient Number 9 (2022)

Hell will have to wait An Ozzy Osbourne album is always welcome at Guitars Exchange, but if we add that on his new work one of the founding fathers of heavy music collaborates with seven guitarists to whom we have dedicated a legend special, then we have a real event, a work in which the voice of the Prince of Darkness collaborates with giants...

Jack White - Entering Heaven Alive (2022)

Unplugged Intimacy Jack White’s fifth studio album Entering Heaven Alive (22 July 2022; Third Man Records) is his second this year, after Fear of the Dawn, and it sees him take a completely different, more intimate direction.     “I started writing a lot of songs, and they were in all different directions: some...

Mott The Hoople - All The Young Dudes (1972)

Bowie to the rescueThe story goes like this: Mott The Hoople were a great rock & roll band; adored by a small but loyal following, including a teenage Mick Jones of the Clash; they had released four studio albums since their formation and played hundreds of great gigs since their inception in 1968; but success continued to turn its back on...

Jeff Beck & Johnny Depp - 18 (2022)

A Thumb’s Up! Yardbird guitar legend Jeff Beck and Pirates of the Caribbean’s star Johnny Depp’s collaboration on 18 (15 July 2022; Rhino) arrives in the midst of a firestorm of articles related to Depp’s legal battles with his ex-wife, Amber Heard. Those issues are outside the scope of this review, which is neither going to speculate...