Saturday, February 25, 2023

#598 : Alastair Greene - Alive in the New World (


2023 – Whiskey Bayou Records

By Phillip Smith; Feb. 25, 2023


Original source :


Alastair Greene’s guitar wizardry coupled with his innate ability to craft songs is just the beginning of why his live albums are as delectable as the ones he recorded in studio.  I love the studio albums, but the live albums make for an entirely different listening experience with Alastair packing more into several of the songs.  Greene’s most recent disc Alive in the New World covers ten of the eleven tracks on his 2020 studio album New World Blues.  Produced by Tab Benoit, these live recordings were taken out of a six-night run in Chicago at City Winery during a 2021 tour in which Greene was opening for Benoit.  The lineup is exactly the same as the original studio album with Greene on guitar and vocals, Benoit on drums, and Corey Duplechin on bass and harmony.  The songs are sequenced very differently than they originally were on New World Blues and omits the inclusion of “Alone and Confused”. 

Alastair’s guitar is ablaze and slathered in Texas blues as he leads the record off with “Back at the Poor House”.  The funky groove on this instrumental whisks me away to my happy place.  “Lies and Fear” gets down and dirty as Greene questions an age-old manipulation tactic.  He takes this song skyward as he opens up and lets loose.  I absolutely love “Heroes” as it crashes ashore riding atop an enormous melancholy wave.  The song still reminds me of The Meat Puppets.  It doesn’t take long for “Bayou Mile” to get swampy after it gently rolls in.  Greene dishes out a whopping helping of slide guitar on this one and it sounds great.  Alive in the New World closes in a bodacious way with “The New World Blues”.  This is when Greene dumps the remainder of grease and swamp-water into an amazing finale. 

The New World Blues was a favorite of mine in 2021.  Alive in the New World is a favorite of mine in 2023.  I recommend getting both.    


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