GARY MOORE – Back To The Blues (Deluxe Edition) [2023]

GARY MOORE - Back To The Blues (Deluxe Edition) [2023] - full

Sanctuary Records is releasing a Deluxe Edition of “Back To The Blues”, the thirteenth solo studio album by Northern Irish genius guitarist GARY MOORE. As implied by its title, this 2001 record saw Moore return to the electric blues music with which he had found fame since 1990, after two more experimental albums.
It was also Moore’s first album to feature Darrin Mooney on drums; Mooney would go on to fill the drumming spot on Moore’s next two studio albums, as well as his short-lived Scars project and several live recordings.
Indeed, “Back To The Blues (Deluxe Edition)” features among its bonus material tracks from the album captured Live at VH1.
This is just another strong electric blues-rock effort that falls squarely in line with his similarly themed albums Still Got the Blues, After Hours, and Blues Alive. Although he adds brass on a rollicking version of B.B. King’s “You Upset Me Baby,” Moore predominantly sticks to the basics here, pounding out energetic and full-bodied blues-rock and leading a stripped-down trio with a journeyman’s enthusiasm and his trademark thick, sustained guitar solos slashing through the proceedings.

The majority of the tracks are originals, and while some recall Gary’s past material, all are goodies. “Cold Black Night” is little more than a speeded-up “Messin’ With the Kid,” and “Picture of the Moon” sounds similar to Moore’s own “Still Got the Blues.”
There’s hot versions of “Stormy Monday” and “I Ain’t Got You”, songs covered by many, but Moore pulls off even the most clichéd material with his phenomenal prowess; supple, identifiable vocals; and a guitar tone that effortlessly shifts from a Santana / Peter Green-styled hovering intensity to a slashing Stevie Ray Vaughan attack.

While on this album Moore didn’t re-defined the genre or even his own approach to it, he’s adding his stamp to blues-rock with ”Back to the Blues”. Consistently rugged, moving, and heartfelt, the album is a reminder that even without reinventing an established musical style, an artist can effectively work within its boundaries to produce a satisfying interpretation relying solely on talent and passion.
Highly Recommended


01 – Enough of the Blues
02 – You Upset Me Baby
03 – Cold Black Night
04 – Stormy Monday
05 – I Ain’t Got You
06 – Picture of the Moon
07 – Looking Back
08 – The Prophet
09 – How Many Lies
10 – Drowning In Tears
11 – Picture of the Moon (Single Mix)
12 – Cold Black Night (Live at VH1)
13 – Stormy Monday (Live at VH1)

Gary Moore – guitar, vocals
Vic Martin – keyboards
Pete Rees – bass
Darrin Mooney – drums


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