Topic: Redemption....is it just me ?

So, I've been on the Joe Train for a very long time now, a huge fan, even did street team promos for him between 2006 and 2012.
The new disc is great, because it's Joe, and I love Joe, and his enormous talent, but I must say, I'm having a couple issues with this latest effort. How do I say this?....well....it just seems that Joe is starting to repeat himself. I don't really find anything on this disc that I haven't heard before in some way. I know this is bound to happen to any artist at some point, and with BCC and RCFP, he's able to go a little more outside the box, but "Redemption" tells me that Joe has kind of fallen into a comfort zone with his music. I just don't hear the urgency and spark that I have on past efforts...almost all of them...13th studio album, I believe, and I've only been underwhelmed by 2....Also, Joe, I give you permission to stop using Zeppelin riffs, especially the "Kashmir" progression you love so much. It's just getting a bit old ! There are a lot worse artists you could lift from. I'll give you credit for that ! Don't get me wrong, the new album has some excellent tunes on it....I just feel as though we're not breaking any new ground here. Honestly, I wish Joe would drop the "big band" sound altogether and bring back the 3 piece, and then spank us with a Gary Moore "Scars" like disc. This may just be me or...I don't know, whattya think ??

Murfdog

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I have to agree with this assessment but you know, the same thing happens to almost all superlative guitarists.

I remember when Clapton left the surreal blues guitar and went off to produce 'hits'. People loved him but not the guitar purists. I'm not saying Joe is doing this but he's getting precariously close to that edge. The songs are all right but not... well you know. Not anywhere near the energy level or creativity of the power trio. However, like Clapton, I just wait for him to come back... and he will. They all do sooner or later since it is their first love.

Just my 2 cents.

3 (edited by dknight16 2018-12-27 17:39:05)

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Me too.  Good stuff for sure, but doesn’t grab me either.  I’ve only listened to the full CD maybe twice (which I am loathe to admit).  I especially hate to admit that in Joe’s very own house, but there it is.

Part of the issue may be the shift from doing many covers to doing almost all original material.  Critics complained back then about over reliance on covers, but its hard to write to the level of variety covers afforded.  The big band approach has gone on quite a bit longer than I expected.  Although my wife simply LOVED the last tour.

I of course, love a more guitar oriented sound (although I can’t deny what Joe has been doing has blown him up in popularity).  So I’ll soldier on and enjoy the full back catalog for interest.

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Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I said the same thing (about hearing it all before) after the first listen but grew to mostly love the new CD.  I enjoy the horns, not the singers.

LIVE MUSIC IS BEST

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

No, it is not just you.
We are a bunch of german fANS WHO THINK SO TOO.

The new record is cool because it is Joe. Would any other name stand on it I wouldn't even listen to it or discover it.
Only Just cause you can killed it. Brilliant Solo. And Love is a Gamble is also quite cool but I miss something there.
Yes, it is a record made in a Comfort zone. Just for me. But I am pretty sure Joe will find a way out of it.
Maybe change the producer for the next one. sorry Kevin.
Great work with BOD. I really love that one. But Redemption is also very overproduced.
Merry Christmas to all Joe fans out there (a bit late) and happy new year in a few days

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I like the album and I like the big band sound, but I too would love to see an album with just a three or four piece band soon.

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Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I say there are a couple of points here.One which has been going on for a while.That is the horns.I can’t say that I dislike them at all.In fact they add a lot as it fits with the material.
  However,I would be happy for a change too.
  The other point is off the first as to his current output of music.
   I do think he is repeating himself in some ways but branching out in other ways.As in with the songwriters he is working with.
   Also I can’t say he repeats himself more than any other artist in rock or blues though.And Kevin Shirley is trying to keep things fresh ie by two drummers or bringing in a second guitar player.
Perhaps a three or 4 piece album might be a good change now.I am not sure a return to covers is the way either.
As for Redemption.I do like it a lot. I think it is a very high quality album. Good songwriting.I wanted to give it more time as I think I may still prefer BOD as it’s more guitar centric.
  I also see the Kashmir type songs are in BCC and his solo works as getting stale now.
  It seems an artist has to change or it gets boring.So Joe has made changes.I do think it has put off a lot of old time fans but
perhaps brought in A lot more new fans?
  In the end he is very  successfull and will have to do what is in his heart.I am glad I still really enjoy all his solo albums.
  In the end Redemption was still my favorite 2018 release. I can’t deny my fandom having a big affect on that.
But stepping back and comparing it to other albums it really is a high quality offer.
I can understand as well why the new style would temper the enthusiasm.
Only time will tell what the future brings.

Your rock candy baby
Your hard sweet and sticky

8 (edited by Jane H. 2018-12-28 06:59:58)

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

i dunno....I am not guitar centric so much myself but could tell there wasn't too much of it on Redemption.
I haven't spun it for a few weeks so will gladly put it at the top of the list today.
My initial thoughts though were that its great, one of the best from Joe IMHO.
WIth most albums it did take a couple listens before I really appreciated it. Ithink they are great songs, great music and good overall flow / theme on the album. Would have been better with Black Roses included IMHO.....and I was hoping for maybe some longer solos or even more short solos. I give permission on the not zeppelin too but mostly because how I like the music is important but how it's received otherwise means a lot to me. I always cringe when folks want him to covers or accuse him of a wannabe of some sort. It takes away in most cases for me but doesn't sound bad.
And I wouldn't presume to know but am always always curious how much of his albums specifics are because of him or suggestion. And the whole song writing process. I love BOD and the songs on Redemption but sometimes fear the parts of the songs I like weren't Joe's contributions.

One thing I can say though is I was listening to another fave's latest album - from last year - and just had so much fun listening. Its guitar, its blues, and some heavy themes but the music is happier? IDK I was noticeably in a better mood after listening to it and the songs IMO super unique.

I don't see Redemption as being not doing anything new at all but it's not the most exciting album to listen to that way? I do rank it high in my Joe faves as overall albums. Honest many of them I skip songs or feel its the same old blues even if the song is fresh? I dunno but Redemption definitely preferred over some Joe's done, as far as whole albums go.

As far as the players...I like it all, want Joe to do how HE wants but sometimes it seems parts written especially because this is in the band or that. Its not that its bad or anything but doesn't always add to me craving to hear or something?

I'd take Redemption II and III over many of his solo and all of his collaborations other than BCC.

Good topic though, I can't always pay attention to think too hard about it and I seem to notice different things so I enjoy hearing how it is for others.

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I quite like BOD and Redemption.
As a body of work they stand up well, although Redemption does lack a bit of solo guitar work.
Joe is technically a solo artist so doesn’t have the luxury of other permanent band members to bring in new ideas or directions.
I get the impression that Kevin Shirley is the major influence on Joe and don’t see that relationship changing in the short term.
Some artists can keep it going for a number of years, others don’t or can’t, I believe Joe has reached a bit of a plateau in his career and can only go up or down from this point.
Hopefully his three date, tenth anniversary concerts at the RAH will be a turning point for him with a few changes to the current setup.

Lester..

He took it all too far,
but boy, could he play guitar.

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Hi Lester.I go along with what you are saying.
It’s hard to tell how much the outside writers he works with versus Kevin Shirley is a bigger influence.
   It seems Joe has found a comfort level with both.Perhaps working with some different outside writers might make more of a change if that is part of the plan.

Your rock candy baby
Your hard sweet and sticky

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

For real? I really like the new album. It cranks! Huh.

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Hm, and I have something to say about this topic also, but for now  lets make a short intermission and listen to this two gentleman ( didn't know who they were until tonight, googled them after Joe's post ) :

  Statler and Waldorf https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6I_dKUYyI4

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Jane H. wrote:

One thing I can say though is I was listening to another fave's latest album - from last year - and just had so much fun listening. Its guitar, its blues, and some heavy themes but the music is happier? IDK I was noticeably in a better mood after listening to it and the songs IMO super unique.


Ahhhhh the Buddy Guy equation which is essentially... "The more you play the blues the less you have them." Looks like he is right again.

14 (edited by TeleMan23 2018-12-29 10:12:11)

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

I do miss the older stuff from Joe as well. I loved the early period of playing Strats with a killer power trio into the days of playing big theaters and ruling the world with the les Paul through the Marshall. I heard that Joe is remaking a new day yesterday- maybe this is the cure to bringing him back to his earlier roots.

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Think of it this way. The world has changed. Albums are only purchased by a small demographic and we are in that demo. Joe gives us constant output to look forward to, consume and digest. Can he truly produce at this volume and reinvent the wheel on every release? Or if he was not evolving and stayed a power trio would have be connecting to new fans on a consistent basis?

I noticed at the most recent show I attended that the audience was about 50% male and female. I noticed the most crazed fans at the show were probably female. Joe was smart enough to know that he had to diversify his audiences from the predominately male guitar freaks to females that certainly enjoy his guitar playing but are there for the songs. Also there for the persona he exudes from the stage now.

I don’t know any other artist that can come out with a new album and play 5 or 6 songs off of it and not have the crowd looking at their watch wondering when he is going to get to the songs they came to hear. That is what the albums have several good songs that come off live really good. On the way out people want to buy them. That is how albums get sold today not at the record store based on radio airplay exposure. Nobody even has to buy an album anymore they just stream it.

Those of us on this forum are not the average Joe B fans. We order everything produced at his store to get it a week early. We own everything he has ever produced. We have our favorites and meh not so much. That doesn’t detour us if we are less than impressed we still buy the next release cause we know he seldom disappoints.

There are some outstanding tracks on this album that will connect with people and grab them, make them fans. Joe is still conquering the world one fan at a time. You just reach them differently. One song heard on XM or shared on Facebook can reach a new fan make somebodies playlist and in turn reach another new fan.  Some of us want him to stay in one place and be that guy we saw at whatever stage in his career we jumped on the bus. I used to be in that camp. Ten years after RAH 09 he is still on the road producing material we look forward to and sometime love, sometimes like, and sometimes loath. How many artists do you know that not only tours this incessantly but releases as much new material? Not many if any. I know if I bring a friend to a show they will still thank me. Go home get on Youtube or Spotify and search, explore and find their own favorites. There are some potential favorites on this album and I have a new one on right now.

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Very well thought out and written post Jim.
It has kind of hit me that as much as I am going along and enjoying the ride,there are a lot of old fans that don’t like the newer material.Or at least not nearly as much as the older material.
  Perhaps that has caused a big drop off here in the forum?

Your rock candy baby
Your hard sweet and sticky

17 (edited by sally12333 2018-12-29 21:03:46)

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Jim, totally agree.

And Gary, the drop off here on the Forum, I believe, is due to everybody moving over to Facebook, Instagram etc. where Joe and people posting about him is/are much more active. 

We all are in love with the Joe as he was when we first discovered him.  We need to be flexible and allow him to grow and experiment.  Sometimes it may seem he's in a rut.  Maybe.  But I still am in total awe of his talents.

"To repeat a good thing is to sit still; to take a chance is to grow." - Joe Bonamassa
I need some Joe...NOW.
Joe = Joy

Re: Redemption....is it just me ?

Wow, I'm actually a little shocked to see most people agree with me on this.....Thought I might get a bit "Torn down" for less than stellar comments. There are some excellent tracks on this disc, but, again, overall, I think Joe needs to freshen things up a bit....I'd love to see a straight ahead Rock/blues band. BCC does not do it for me...can't get past the fact that I hate Glenn's vocals....sorry. I'm not really too worried, BOD rocked my world, and every disc can't be the same in tone, song quality, production, etc. Joe likes to cover everyone, and spent the last few Live albums giving us songs from Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Eric Clapton, etc....How about.....A Hendrix tribute....He's covered him before. I'd love to see his take on some Jimi covers....Are You Experienced from ANDY was FANTASTIC....Just throwing out suggestions

Murfdog