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The Turner Diaries

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Eddie Turner - The Turner Diaries (Northern Blues Music)

Reviewing Eddie Turner’s debut solo release, Rise, from 2005, I quickly came up with the comparisons: Jimi Hendrix, Keb’ Mo’, Lenny Kravitz, and Vernon Reid (Living Colour). However, now with the 2006 sophomore disc, The Turner Diaries, I’m seeing all comparisons in a different light. Turner makes new music that’s like the old blueprints for the music that came before him. There’s no way that Turner could’ve inspired the sounds I’m hearing, but he makes you believe that he’s the one that launched those riffs.

The funk of the Spin Doctors was really just a pale imitation of Turner’s new song, “New Day.” When the Doors covered Willie Dixon’s “Back Door Man,” really they were trying to follow in Turner’s future footsteps on “Shake 4 Me.” On “Jody,” I can imagine Keb’ Mo’, Robert Cray, and Motown all taking inspiration from Eddie Turner.

The disc kicks off with “Dangerous,” built on a dangerous guitar lick like in Classic Rock, but here you get the whole deal. With mic test intact (“Check one, two”) and some feedback, “Cost of Freedom” is like the blazing core to a Living Colour song. “I’m a Man, I’m a Man” evokes that Country Blues on the Victrola that I hear referenced so many places today, such as Jars of Clay’s “Trouble Is” (Who We Are Instead).

Spiritually, The Turner Diaries doesn’t have as many easy hooks as Rise, but certainly, in the African rhythmic pulse of the title track, we’re meeting Turner in conversation with his doubt and our own—“Believe us, deceive us.” Turner is also know as “Devilboy,” and Jeff Jaisun (BluesToDo.com) has said, “If anybody ever went down to the Crossroads and let the Devil tune his guitar, it was probably Eddie Turner.” The Turner Diaries challenges you to face head on the legend of blues and the devil, but even in these darker tunes which point towards the limited light of our sight (“Some say heaven is a far away land/I only know what I can see”), I still find truths that seek the light which sets you free. - BS

From Americana Roots

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