Melvin Taylor and the Slack Band: Bang That Bell

A young cat who strays into heavy-handed rock-blues territory is Melvin Taylor. On Bang That Bell he flashes searing metallic chops on “Love Is a Gamble” and pulls out all the stops on a wah-wah inflected modern interpretation of Earl King’s “Trick Bag” and on a vicious treatment of Tinsley Ellis’ slow blues “A Quitter Never Wins.” Fellow guitar hotshot Eric Gales guests on the title track and on the screaming wah-wah-laden jam “Even Trolls Love Rock & Roll.” Harmonica virtuoso Sugar Blue matches Taylor stride for stride on the hyper-boogie “It’s Later Than You Think” and on a funky, New Orleans-flavored remake of Mose Allison’s “If You’re Going to the City.” For sheer guitar heroics and fretboard flash, it’s hard to beat Melvin Taylor.