Too Slim and the Taildraggers: Free Your Mind - 5 stars

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Can't fault that for a name can you? FREE YOUR MIND is by all accounts Too Slim- aka Tim Landfords eleventh album and it certainly packs a punch. Released on his own Underworld Records, it is a collection of foot stomping, hard driving blues interspersed with the occasional slower number. For those who like their blues to really rock, then Too Slim's the man for you, the raspy delivery blending perfectly with a massive smoking guitar sound. This is a man of passion and talent who has been compared to some of the big names from John Mellencamp and Joe Walsh through to Lynard Skynard. Testament with its layers of haunting guitar work is hypnotic and seemingly influenced by the pain of the extremely harsh winter Seattle suffered this year. Last Train was virtually lifted from a copy of the Seattle Times and details the irony of the days news stories with wit and poetry. The track contains the classic fatalistic line: 'feel like im riding on the last train/ and Hunter S. Thompson is the engineer!" Free Your Self exhorts you to: 'Pour Yourself a cold one' and try everything before you get old.' The excellent Throw Me a Rope muses wistfully on just who might do that, when the chips are down and features and uplifting middle guitar solo. Classically, the best is saved for last when guest vocalist, Lauren Evans sings the gorgeous gospel tinged track The Light, which simply sends shivers down the spine. It's mean, it's raggedy, it's real, it's the blue with attitude.