Double Take Truth be told, some of my EW colleagues were less than impressed with the news that 2003 had been decreed the Year of the Blues… Double Take Truth be told, some of my EW colleagues were less than impressed with the news that 2003 had been decreed the Year of the Blues… 2004-01-13 Billy Branch Kenny Neal Blues
Review

Double Take (2004)

EW's GRADE
A-

Details Release Date: Jan 13, 2004; Lead Performances: Billy Branch and Kenny Neal; Genre: Blues

Truth be told, some of my EW colleagues were less than impressed with the news that 2003 had been decreed the Year of the Blues by Congress. ''Da blooz? A dead music,'' these cynics sniffed. Me, I decided to keep my ears open. Lo and behold, as 2004 dawns, I find my confidence in the form's continued vitality validated by the release of Kenny Neal & Billy Branch's Double Take. With just acoustic guitar and harmonica, the duo (Neal hails from Baton Rouge, La., and Branch lives in Chicago) delivers a set of country blues that might just renew your faith in the eternal verities. They shine on some classics (Muddy Waters' ''Mannish Boy,'' Sonny Boy Williamson's ''Don't Start Me Talking,'' Willie Dixon's ''My Babe'') and do a helluva job on the more obscure material -- check out the stunningly gorgeous ''The Son I Never Knew (Take 2)'' and the humorous ''Northern Man Blues.'' Bravo, fellas. And don't worry -- I got your back.

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Originally posted Jan 16, 2004 Published in issue #746 Jan 16, 2004 Order article reprints
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