From Otis Taylor's band and most recent CDs, comes singer/songwriter/guitarist
Eddie Turner. However, his hazy modernism couldn't be further from Taylor's
dark folklore. Turner was born in Cuba, and raised in Chicago. In the
early '70s, he moved to the Rockies to attend University. Since music
appealed to him far more than academia, Turner became absorbed in the
local scene. A claim to fame arose when he landed the lead guitarist
spot in Zephyr. When things didn't work out, he found himself working
as a realtor. In '95, he hooked up with Taylor.
Using drums that sound like a marching Cadet band, Turner's debut album's
title track explodes with passion, intensity and fire. Suddenly, you
are transfixed into another place and time. With acoustic guitars and
loop programming, the all-instrumental "The River" is old
and new. The spacey track will appeal to the digital age's mainstream
audience. Hendrix influences resound in Turner's new world guitar. However,
on "The Wind Cries Mary", Turner's robust voice proves to
be his greatest asset. On "Gangster Of Love", heavy funk meets
R&B and asks psychedelic rock to join the dance. "Play It Cool"
is as close to the blues as things get. On this deafening Freddie King
tune, Turner pitches his guitar notes and sends them twisting, burning
and curving. "Sin" and "Privileged Life" are ultra-cool,
and show us a world that many listeners cannot or will not penetrate.
Both songs include arrangements and vocal styling popular on urban,
contemporary black radio. "Was it my blackness or the color of
my skin," boldly questions Turner on the latter. Many other lyrics
contain spiritual analogies.
Turner's forward-thinking music is blues-based, but it is ultra-modern
and contains psychedelic rock. It is as relevant now as Derek And The
Dominos' debut must have been in 1970. Among 12 songs, three alluring
instrumentals will intoxicate the straightest of the sober. Whether
you were looking for a mind-altering experience or not, that is the
state you will find yourself when these 43-minutes conclude. Without
trying to attract a new audience, Turner will, undoubtedly, do just
that. This is a stunning album, and the dawn of a new musical force
and presence. The secret of Eddie Turner has been revealed. He could
crossover as easily and quickly as Robert Randolph.
- Tim Holek, South
West Blues Magazine