2021 – Red Rocker Records
By Phillip Smith; April 3, 2021
I can’t help but be a fan of Nashville-based Aussie recording artist 8 Ball Aitken. His unique style of blues-rock is a funky and infectious blend. Ice Cream Man, his twelfth and latest album, was recorded in Nashville and features Buddy Guy’s Grammy Award winning producer Tom Hambridge on drums, Buddy Leach (George Thorogood and the Destroyers) on saxophone, Taya Chani on backing vocals, Dillion James Aitken (8 Ball’s brothers) on organ/keys, with 8 Ball taking on all guitars, bass, harmonica, and lead vocals.
Southern soul meets delta blues when 8 Ball leads the album off with title-track “Ice Cream Man”. Loaded with fun, saucy double entendres, this one always puts a smile on my face. Fueled with a Jimi Hendrix-inspired riff and a ‘Summer of Love’ vibe, 8 Ball builds an enlightening case for “Peace Love and Understanding”, by dropping notable quotes from purveyors of peace such as Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., and John Lennon. “Boomerang”, a psychedelic rocker with a thunderous beat and an inescapable groove chronicles the tale of an on-again off-again relationship. This is one cool-as-hell track which begs to be heard at a loud volume. I love the ominous road 8 Ball wanders onto with “Hard Times and Struggle”. He’s definitely reaching into Tom Waits and Nick Cave territory here, and it sounds great. The fierce guitar/harmonica performance he gives on “Solitaire” is absolutely wonderful and cuts deep to the bone.
Ice Cream Man is a splendid listen from start to finish. I highly recommend it.
For more information about the artist, visit this website : https://www.8ballaitken.com/
Available on Bandcamp
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