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Mike Henderson and the Bluebloods: Thicker Than Water

Another great bar band is the Nashville-based Mike Henderson & The Bluebloods. On Thicker Than Water (Dead Reckoning 0012; 48:39), triple threat frontman Henderson blows wicked blues harp on the intense opener “Keep What You Got,” flaunts vicious slide guitar chops on his dark original “Whiskey Store” and sings with rowdy confidence throughout. Henderson is also the principal songwriter of the band, turning in some choice offerings in “Tears Like a River,” “All My Money’s Gone,” “Angel of Mercy” and “Slow Your Motor Down.” The Bluebloods hit a righteous groove on “I Need Me a Car,” a New Orleans-flavored number powered by John Gardner’s second line drumming and John Jarvis’ rolling piano, and they rock like vintage NRBQ on “Scared of That Child” and “Uranium Rock,” both featuring more brilliant barrellhouse boogie-woogie piano from Jarvis. Other highlights in this sizzling sophomore outing include distinctive takes on Sonny Boy Williamson’s “Mister Downchild,” Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater’s “Wouldn’t Lay My Guitar Down” and Howlin’ Wolf’s “My Country Sugar Mama.”

Originally Published