Gravy - From The Hip
Review Published Apr 1, 1999
Visit the Gravy Fan Website
Visit Rob Thorworth's Official Website
EB Rating - 4.5
- Junkyard Man
- High And Dry
- She's Fine
- The Love Bug
- Full Figured Friend
- That's One For Me
- Alabama Red
- The Devil's Right Arm
- What Time Does The Bus Leave
- My Love Stays Home
- Lucille Green Spanish
- Needle And Thread
"Primal Blues"... I can't take credit for coming up with that description of
Gravy, but it's the most appropriate. The same reviewer who
coined "primal" also referred to the band's sound as stripped down. I disagree with this part. While
Gravy was a three piece band of guitar, bass, and drums, I don't find the sound to be stripped down at all.
The band's vocalist and guitarist, Rob Thorworth,
sing's with a distinct, somewhat jagged style well suited for blues. The guitar, which is
quite prominent throughout the disc in both rhythms and leads, is equally distinctive and
about as raunchy and down & dirty as it can be. The wah-wah is occasionally engaged which pushes
the sound's limits even farther.
Gravy's sound is a little difficult to classify.
Blues-rock is about the closest, but the guitar style/sound is somewhat heavier than blues-rock.
But it's not heavy blues either... it doesn't feature the flashier speed-licks I associate with
heavy blues. Whatever you want to call it, there's plenty of inspired guitar, enough to satisfy
most any blues guitar fan.
From The Hip is very consistent. You'll either go for
Gravy or you won't. I find the CD to be very enjoyable throughout. Some of my favorite songs are
Junkyard Man (which features some wicked wah-wah leads),
Change, She's So Fine, Full Figured Friend, What Time Does The Bus Leave, and
My Love Stays Home. There are others I really like as well. There truly
are no poor or mediorcre songs on the entire CD.
I didn't realize when I first heard this CD that it was an independent release. I was amazed when
I later learned it was recorded in someone's garage. It sure doesn't sound like it. From The Hip
was recorded in 1994, and Gravy has since disbanded. When the Kudzu label folded,
From The Hip went out of print. But Thorworth now has a limited number of copies available
through his Official Website. The key word here is "limited".
If you like the sounds of Gravy, you'd better put your order in soon.
While at Rob's website, you can check out audio clips of all the songs on his new release,
Life Is Suffering. Several songs on this CD are reminicent of the Gravy sound,
with Rob hitting the wah-wah pedal more often and with more effect. Also, there are a couple of killer
straight blues tunes, something From The Hip did not feature. Overall though,
the new CD is not as focused on blues as it's predecessor, as Thorworth explores
new ground in many different styles including pop, funk, jazz and swing on about half the songs.