2015 – Cherryburst Records
By Phillip Smith; Feb 20, 2016
Rocky Athas delivers another ten terrific tracks in the second installment of his Essential series. Volume II was well worth the wait indeed. Heavy-laden with killer Texas-style blues riffs, “You Move Me” kicks this album off with a jamming, soulful groove. Immediately following, Athas then crushes it on “Bluesville”, a beautifully performed heartbreaker. Hope is the foundation of “Miracle”, a silky smooth R&B love song, delicately played with tasty hot guitar licks. The funky bass line and trance-friendly beat in “On the Move” create the perfect atmosphere for Athas to let loose on his ’74 Stratocaster. I could listen to this instrumental all day long. And for a song that really makes an impression, “Survival” gets right to the core, as Athas paints a hellish picture of war, in Warren Zevon-esque bravado. The monster cover of Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen” , however, is the cherry on top of the album. I love this track right down to the glorious cow-bell intro. This song is played loud and often. The Essential Rocky Athas Volume II is a delectable album tailor-made for the blues enthusiast.
For more information about Rocky Athas, visit his website, http://www.rockyathas.com/