Devon Allman does an admirable job of bringing the legacy of Southern blues rock to the next generation. On his band’s sophomore release, Space Age Blues, he also demonstrates an ability to keep one foot planted in tradition while moving forward with his other.
The opening track, “Could Get Dangerous,” is a funky blues that is very tastily spiced by the guest harp playing of ’80s pop icon Huey Lewis. The Warren Haynes-esque ballad “Salvation” sees Allman putting down a smoky vocal performance vaguely reminiscent of his father, Greg, and features some smoking sax playing by Ron Holloway. Devon also successfully takes on Stevie Wonder’s “Sir Duke,” flavoring the funky favorite with a healthy dose of wah guitar wizardry. The disc includes a pleasing acoustic interlude on “Blue est Le Vide” and a slow soulful blues ode “Warm in Wintertime,” as well as a groovy instrumental throwback titled “Insh’Allah.”
Overall, Space Age Blues represents a promising follow-up to the band’s first release,Torch, and should help advance the younger Allman to the next level of success.
Space Age Blues is out now on Provogue Records.