Review by Lorraine Kay
Shelf Life is Matt O’Ree’s third album and just like the two previous ones is a great showcase for the award-winning guitarist. O’Ree’s guitar playing has won him many accolades including the 2006 Guitarmageddon "King of the Blues" 2006. And Shelf Life gives him lots of space to show what he can do. A versatile guitarist and vocalist, O’Ree plays out several moods and musical styles on this CD.
Featuring Matt O’Ree on guitars and vocals, Captain Hal B. Seizer on bass and Bob Pantella on drums and percussion, Shelf Life successfully marries rock ‘n’ roll with the blues well enough to equally hold the interest of fans of both genres. The big question is whether it is a blues album or a rock and roll album. It is impossible to answer that because it is truly both.
When it was first released Shelf Life won four awards for O’Ree at the 2005 Asbury Music Awards, winning Best Release, Song Of The Year (for “Saints And Sinners”), Best Guitarist and Best Blues Band. After listening to it once it is easy to see why. O’Ree’s guitar playing is everything expected of an award winning guitarist, but his vocals are an even nicer surprise. Bold and gritty his vocals hang right in there along side some of the best in Southern rock like the Allman Brothers and the Vanzants.
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2006 Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.