MOTU â€“ Going Back To Memphis / 2007 Self / 11 Tracks / http://www.motu.net /
â€œSo Lonelyâ€ starts out â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€, and it shows MOTU as an act that is tremendously influenced by blues. The male vocals during â€œSo Lonelyâ€ have a Randy Newman-like approach to them, and the inclusion of the second, female vocals on the track give the track further expansion. The instrumentation of the track may meander, but the inclusion of both vocals do a great job of reining the instrumentation in. â€œ52 West 8th Avenueâ€ shows more focus in regards to the instrumentation, opening up with a guitar line that is focused, but allowed to wander at key points.
The resulting track shows the ability of the instrumentation to stick along well with the vocals. These two streams converge again during the title track. â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€ shifts the style of MOTU a bit, to include a more bluegrass type of style. There is a hidden energy to the track that is present in the slide-heavy guitar lines present during â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€. Â The band makes a heart turn into a classic type of blues sound with their â€œClear Waterâ€. This is evidenced not only by the instrumentation present on the track, but even in the lyrical structure employed by MOTU. This means that there is a phrase sung, repeated again, with the third line putting forth another idea. While some of the tracks on â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€ fit well in todayâ€™s music, â€œClear Waterâ€ shines even more brightly due to itsâ€™ use of these earlier style. However, the disc shines brightest with â€œWalk â€˜Till I Fallâ€.
The dual vocals come back in a major way during this track, and while the instrumentation takes a back seat, there is nuance enough present in these vocals to keep individuals interested throughout the track. The guitar work of Dr. Richard Michelson is something to behold during all 11 tracks of â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€. This is because of the full sound that he can provide with just six strings. Notes that typically would not mesh well together are given a new lease on life as Michelsonâ€™s skillful fingers link them together. â€œGoing Back To Memphisâ€ has made a convert out of someone that would not typically get within 20 feet of a blues type of album. Even if your tastes are more closely aligned with rock, hardcore, or punk music, it would behoove you to pick up this album.
Top Tracks: I Wonâ€™t Be Standing Alone, Clear Water