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Stage Buzz: Jay O’Rourke Band at SPACE

| August 9, 2019

Jay O’Rourke Band
Cover Tracks

O’Rourke released one of 2018’s best local albums (Sumthin’ Good), but Cover Tracks mines music he’s loved in his formative and modern years. It’s his labor of love. Longtime IE readers will remember him as the guitarist for the Insiders and BB Spin, and his engineering resume is almost as impressive, working on sessions for artists as diverse as Ministry and Stabbing Westward, to Koko Taylor and Material Issue.

Cover Tracks are vector drawings of his deep bluesy musical influences including legends Howlin’ Wolf, Honey Boy Edwards, plus Chuck E. Weiss and The Blackwater Fever. O’Rourke’s pleasantly abrasive remake ‘Evil (is Going on), written by Chicago blues legend Wille Dixon but made famous by Howlin Wolf, captures the dirty regret of the original, but is superbly powered by Frank Raven’s harmonica work and O’Rourke’s guitar work. “Wind Howlin’ Blues” (Honey Boy Edwards) breaks things up dynamically with great acoustic slide guitar work from O’Rourke. At the end of the day, what’s more fun than making an album of your favorite tunes?

Jay O’Rourke appears at SPACE in Evanston tonight, August 9th with Spies Who Surf

– David Gedge – 7/10


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