BRIAN ROBERTSON – Diamonds And Dirt (2011)

BRIAN ROBERTSON Diamonds And Dirt (2011)

In 1974, alongside Scott Gorham, an 18-year-old Scottish guitarist named Brian ‘Robbo’ Robertson replaced Gary Moore (R.I.P.) in Thin Lizzy, solidifying the best and most popular incarnation of that perpetually underrated outfit.
As a member of Thin Lizzy, Robertson contributed to five undeniable masterstrokes of guitar-driven hard rock -Nightlife, Fighting, Jailbreak, Johnny The Fox, and Bad Reputation- although by the time of that last record, the band had splintered, and Robertson was featured only on a few tracks and wasn’t pictured in the album art.
After his ousting from Lizzy (in which he was himself replaced by Gary Moore), Robertson formed the short-lived band Wild Horses before famously and briefly joining Motorhead in 1982 as the first replacement for Fast Eddie Clarke. Robertson’s personality and melodic playing style was an ill fit for Lemmy and Philthy, and after 1983’s ‘Another Perfect Day’, Robertson was out of Motorhead.

Since then, Robertson has popped up at a few tributes, played a few guest spots here and there, but largely, whether intentional or not, he’s stayed out of the spotlight.
Robertson uncovered some tapes of some previously unreleased songs he had worked on some time before. He passed them on to his friend Søren Lindberg and asked him to have a listen.
Lindberg checked them and called Robertson back and told him he had some brilliant stuff on there and maybe he should consider doing an album with them.
Now, thirty-six years after he first appeared with Thin Lizzy, Brian Robertson releases his first solo album, “Diamonds And Dirt”, featuring performances by Europe drummer Ian Haugland, bassist Nalle Pahlsson of swedish melodic rockers legend Treat, and former Michael Schenker Group and Great King Rat Leif Sundin as additional vocalist.

“Diamonds And Dirt” comprises songs from Thin Lizzy days (74-78), some were born from Robertson’s collaboration with his scottish friend, the soul-rocker Frankie Miller, and the others are written, but never released Robbo compositions.
Precisely one of his own penned songs, the title track “Diamonds And Dirt” opens the album and gives us a little taste of what this going to be like: eighties melodic classic rock with great guitar solos.
“It’s Only Money” comes from Thin Lizzy’s 1974 ‘Nightlife’, and “Running Back” from 1976’s ‘Jailbreak’. (Robertson also includes a slow version for the latter.)
“Blues Boy” is an unreleased song that he co-wrote with Phil Lynott, a laid back poppy hard rock with a bluesy edge.
There are three tracks from his work on Frankie Miller’s ‘Dancing In The Rain’ (1986): “Mail Box”, “Do It Till We Drop”, and “Ain’t Got No Money” (with Riverdogs’ vocalist Rob Lamothe on vocals).
All these songs get a proper and hearty performance with great guitar riffs and melody, that grow even stronger as the song progresses.

Though these historical references are interesting, the meat remains Robertson’s own compositions. These songs are opener “Diamonds And Dirt”, “Passion”, “Texas Wind”, “Devil In My Soul” and “That’s All”. These are excellent representations of Robertson’s skill at creating a fabulous melodic hard rock with a definite blues undercurrent, and he’s a damn fine singer at that. All five are great.

“Diamonds And Dirt” contains countless amounts of unbelievable melodic guitar solos that prove Robertson’s talent hidden for so many years, after his withdrawal from music world.
Robbo handles all the guitars, plus some vocals alongside ex-MSG singer Leif Sundin which mellifluous and melodious voice sits perfectly in this style.
The songs are very open and airy, old style melodic rockers plus a bluesy edge, with a terrific production job that gives the album a very catchy, ear-friendly sound that tends to get stuck in your head.
“Diamonds And Dirt” is a true ‘diamond’ for people who appreciate classic rock done with taste, from the heart.
It’s actually quite annoying how good this is, when you think how little Robertson has recorded over the last quarter of a century.

01 – Diamonds And Dirt (Brian Robertson)
02 – Passion (Brian Robertson)
03 – It’s Only Money (Phil Lynott)
04 – Mail Box (Frankie Miller)
05 – Running Back (Phil Lynott)
06 – Texas Wind (Brian Robertson)
07 – Devil In My Soul (Brian Robertson)
08 – Do It Till We Drop (Drop It) (F.Miller/J.Barry/B.Robertson)
09 – Blues Boy (Brian Robertson/Phil Lynott)
10 – That’s All…! (Brian Robertson)
11 – 10 Miles To Go On A 9 Mile Road (Jim White)
12 – Running Back (Phil Lynott) (slow version)
13 – Ain’t Got No Money (Frankie Miller) [bonus track]

Brian Robertson – All Guitars, Lead & Backing Vocals, Keyboards
Ian Haugland (EUROPE) – Drums and Percussion
Nalley Påhlsson (TREAT, THERION) – Bass Guitar & Backing Vocals
Leif Sundin (Ex-MSG, GREAT KING RAT) – Lead Vocals
Liny Wood – Backing Vocals
Rickard Jakobson – Percussion

Chris Antblad (SPIN GALLERY) – Piano on “Running Back”
Rob Lamothe (RIVERDOGS) – Lead Vocals on “Ain’t Got No Money”
Ola Gustafsson – Dobro on “Running Back” (slow version)
Ellinor Alm – Backing Vocals on “Ain’t Got No Money”
Håkan Persson – Drums on “Ain’t Got No Money”

3 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    Tank you

  2. Anonymous says:

    espectacular , muchas gracias por tan bello disco Robbo siempre esta presente en la memoria de todos los q aman la guitarra 70 tera

  3. Feelgood says:

    Especially just for the Frankie Miller songs.

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