T.J. Sullivan,
Blues and Other Love Songs
(self-produced, 1998)

Blues and Other Love Songs is a rough blues EP by T.J Sullivan. There are times when the pieces all fall together beautifully and times when the pieces simply don't click. And when there are only four songs, one bad song is one too many.

The music fluxes and sets the tone for the songs. The musicians are Sullivan (vocals and guitars), Steve Annan (guitars), Phil Bloch (drums and percussion) and James Rhodes (bass guitar). They are joined by two guest musicians, Laurie Melan (harmonica) and Dave Pearlman (pedal steel guitar).

The CD starts off on a rough note with "Woman Lookin' for a Man." The song has a tinny, hammered feel to it that I cannot stand. They keep the energy in "Rockability Baby Boogie," but this time the pieces all slide together nicely and the music hooks you with the very first note.

"Baby I Know" and "A Girl Like You" are laidback songs that drift to you. "Baby I Know" takes a few bars to draw you in, while "A Girl Like You" had me from the first lazy beat.

The CD is passing fair. I want to say it is better than that based on the last tracks but I keep getting stopped by the first. Still, keep an eye out for T.J. Sullivan, he has some very good music in him.

[ by Paul de Bruijn ]
Rambles: 2 February 2002