The amusingly eccentric and low-key Mose Allison, now 82 years young, has exerted a wide influence over the years. His shadow extends across artists as diverse as the Rolling Stones, Van Morrison, The Who, the Clash, and even the Pixies.
On the catchy opener to his The Way of the World, “My Brain,” a tongue-in-cheek gem spun around the groove of Willie Dixon’s “My Babe,” Allison’s idiosyncratic vocals and and jazz- and blues-inspired piano skills are on full display. The fun continues with the lazy jazz of “Everybody Thinks You’re An Angel” and the dazzling ivory-pounding of “Crush.”
The entire disc is piled with Allison’s wit, wisdom and natural compositional skill, and is lifted up further with help from guitarist Greg Leisz and bassist David Piltch (who have logged time backing k.d. lang and Bill Frisell, among others). The final track includes an assist from Mose’s daughter, Amy Allison, who shares her vocals and songwriting talent on the introspective “This New Situation.” And so the vibe continues.
The Way of the World is out now on Anti- Records.