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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Second Hand Mojo

After Midnight

Review by Gary Hill

The music this act makes feels like it would have been at home on the radio in the 1970s. Their brand of rocking sound is definitely set in that era. They are very good at creating music within that zone, too. This is a particularly effective set from start to finish. They vary things well from song to song, too. That means it never feels redundant or tired.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) in Music Street Journal: 2020  Volume 3. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2020.

Track by Track Review
Call Me
I love the raunchy, hard-rocking guitar sound that opens this. The cut moves out from there with a killer 1970s rock sound. This is energized and catchy. It's also very classy.
After Midnight
There is more of a groove oriented texture to this compared to the rocking guitar based mode of the opener. That said, this is every bit as classy and 70s oriented as the opener. Musically it reminds me a bit of the more rock side of the German band Lake, but with lower register vocals. The organ solo is a nice touch.
All About You
Piano starts this cut with an almost classical approach. Then a bluesy guitar drives it as the rest of the band joins. This is a slow moving and dramatic blues rocker.
Hold On
A bit more anthemic, this has a catchy chorus. I dig the whole tune. It is set in a very mainstream, but still retro, rock zone. It's solid, but not a highlight. That's more about the strength of the others than any weakness in this tune. On another disc it might well be a standout.
One Last Song
This ballad is a nice touch. It has a great multi-voice vocal arrangement. The whole musical concept is another retro one. While this is another that I wouldn't consider a highlight, it's strong. It also brings some definite variety.
Saturday Night
The closer is another classy retro based rocker. It has hints of Southern rock and blues rock. It's a particularly strong piece, and great closer.
 
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