Walter Trout and the Radicals - Go The Distance
I review a lot of blues and blues/rock recordings and at times I find it difficult to adequate describe a particular artist's work. However, there are some artists whose work is so consistently excellent that it makes writing about them a simple labor of love. Such artists' recordings transcend those of their peers and place them in a class entirely unto themselves. I have often said that people like this could record the Alphabet song and take it platinum.

At the front of the pack of such artists in the blues/rock genre remains Walter Trout. Trout's latest studio release "Go The Distance" comes directly on the heels of his wildly successful dual live CDs "Face the
Music" and "Live Trout" and is Trout's finest and most consistent studio recording to date, though any studio recording cannot capture the complete magic of what is a Walter Trout live show. The last time I was fortunate enough to see him live, Trout received a standing ovation from a large portion of the audience while warming up, a rousing testimony to his prowess. This also demonstrates that his fans are among the most devout and loyal of any and they are quick to tell you that Walter Trout is "The Man". Whether or not he is your favorite artist is irrelevant. What is important is that he be recognized as one of the most talented blues/rock musicians of this or any other generation. In a day when many a young axe slinger is billed as the next Stevie Ray or Hendrix, being the current Walter Trout is not so bad either. Someday in the near future, you will see young phenoms glowingly touted as "the next Walter Trout".

You need not listen past the first song of "Go The Distance" to recognize that this is a first rate recording. "Love So Deep" is a blues/rock masterpiece and among Trout's best songs ever recorded. It is just one of the 13 original tracks you will enjoy on this CD. Once known primarily as a guitarist, Trout has now become recognized also as a passionate vocalist and excellent and grossly under appreciated song writer. The jacket cover of the CD includes one of his poetic writings "I Have Been Faithful" which is both moving and inspriring, as are many of his original compositions. The material here, as in most cases with Trout, includes blistering blues/rock, melodic and profound ballads, with a wonderful acoustic track "Always Been a Dreamer" thrown in for good measure. His body of acoustic work, though not plentiful, is extremely enjoyable.

Needless to say, I strongly suggest that you pick up a copy of "Go The Distance" from most any US retailer or better yet pick up one at a live Walter Trout show. If you see him live, allow time afterwards to meet him. An important part of the Walter Trout experience is speaking with him as one person to another. I found him to be a deeply spiritual person of substance, which is more important to me that any ratings that I might give any of this recordings.

But, the CDs are pretty good, too.

The Band:
Walter Trout: Guitar and vocals
James Trapp: Bass
Bernard Pershey: Drums
Bill Mason: Organ B3 and keyboards

1 Love So Deep 2 Outta Control 3 Lookin' For The Promised Land 4 Ride 'Till I'm Satisfied 5 Go The Distance 6 Message On The Doorway 7 Faithful 8 Down To You 9 Bugle Billie 10 Gotta leave This Town 11 I Don't Want My MTV 12 Doin' Just Fine 13 Always Been A Dreamer

RUF 2001
Web site: Walter Trout and the Radicals
© Bluesrockers 2001