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Boin' Back To Dallas [Digipak] *
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Album: Boin' Back To Dallas [Digipak] *
# Song Title   Time
1)    She's My Baby
2)    Too Much
3)    Feel Like Ramblin'
4)    Blue Monday
5)    Too Young to Die
6)    Play It Cool
7)    Straight'n Up
8)    Come on in This House
9)    Shame, Shame, Shame
10)    That's a Problem
11)    Goin' Back to Dallas
 
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Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Darrell Nulisch (vocals, harmonica); Darrell Nulisch; David Earl, Jon Moeller, Jon Moeller (guitar); Kevin Anker (keyboards); Steve Gomes (bass guitar); Rob Stupka (drums).
  • Audio Mixers: Darrell Nulisch; David Earl; Steve Gomes.
  • Recording information: Severn Studios, Severn, MD.
  • Best known as a soul vocalist who gravitates toward the blues, Darrell Nulisch "returns to his roots," as the clich‚ goes and press materials claim, on this stripped-down release. It was recorded live in the studio with his touring quartet of veterans, which provides a live, gritty feel somewhat, but not entirely disconnected from the singer/harpist's previous work in a smoother, soul-based vein. Despite the title, which pertains to Nulisch's home state (he was born in Dallas), the sessions were recorded in Severne, MD. Still, the style is closer to his early work as vocalist for Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets. That's particularly true of Jon Moeller's reserved, clean, yet powerful guitar lines that seem to have been inspired by Funderburgh's similar approach. This is an ensemble recording with no one member hogging the spotlight as the band runs through standard Texas blues shuffles and slow blues with confidence and class. Four Nulisch originals integrate seamlessly with covers from fellow Texans Jimmy Reed and Freddie King. James "Thunderbird" Davis' "Blue Monday" is a particularly inspired choice along with Junior Wells' "Come on in This House" and a few lesser-known nuggets from Chicago's Sonny Boy Williamson II, "She's My Baby" and the slow blues "Too Young to Die." Perhaps most enticing for blues fans is that Nulisch uses the occasion to play more harmonica than on previous releases. Since the emphasis has always been -- and remains -- on his sand-and-honey vocals, Nulisch's impressive harmonica skills have often taken a backseat. That's not the case here; he bursts out of the opening track blowing harp and wails on it for all but a few of the remaining ten tunes. Nulisch's voice remains a unique instrument, instantly recognizable even though there are obvious similarities to Kim Wilson, another Texas-born harmonica-playing frontman. While on the surface there isn't much distinctive about this meat-and-potatoes set, the playing is consistently top-notch and Nulisch sounds inspired. He locks together with his band to produce a low-key vibe that is deceptively simple to create. Few blues acts can find this groove, let alone harness it for an entire album, but Nulisch and company ease into it and let it ride for 40 minutes of sturdy yet malleable Texas blues. ~ Hal Horowitz
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