Vivian Campbell – Two Sides Of If

October 24th, 2005
by Celtic Bob

Vivian Campbell
Two Sides Of If
2005, Sanctuary Records
Rating:5/5

 

Aerosmith did it with HONKIN ON BOBO and now we have Vivian Campbell doing it with TWO SIDES OF IF. Cover albums seem to be the new thing recently and this is no different. Vivian is better known for being the guitarist in Def Leppard so this release may come as a bit of a surprise to Def Lep fans who are expecting a rock record.
When I first heard Viv was releasing a solo disc I became a bit interested in hearing it. Once I learned it was all blues covers I knew it was inevitable that it would end up in my collection. I am a sucker for good blues music, I love the stuff.

Just about everything you?d want from a blues release is found here: from Willie Dixon to Robert Johnson right up to Rory Gallagher. This is  anice collection of a rock guitarists views on some classic and some not so classic blues tunes. Keeping pretty true to the originals Viv plays them with true heartfelt emotion. There is some great jazzy piano on Gallagher?s ?Calling Card? while on ?Spoonful? he gets some vocal help from Joan Osbourne. Songs like ?I?m Ready? and ?I Ain?t Superstitious? are a couple of tracks that every music fan has heard many times, whether it?s the original or one of the many cover versions.

The vocals are handled by Vivian and quite surprisingly are pretty good. His vocal range and ability suits this type of music completely. Add in to account that old guitar tone that he achieves throughout the recording and you have yourself one outstanding disc.

Vivian plays homage to some of Blues greats without whom there wouldn?t be Rock n Roll as we know it. It is clear to see that some of these artists shaped modern Rock. And Vivian does them proud on this album.

1. Messin? With The Kid
2. I?m Ready
3. Calling Card
4. Come On In My Kitchen
5. The Hunter
6. Like It This Way
7. I Ain?t Superstitious
8. Spoonful
9. Reconsider Baby
10. Good Or Bad Times
11. 32/20 Blues
12. Willin? For Satisfaction

 

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