Umphrey’s McGee: March 25th, Wilma Theater
Tart, Tangy, Smooth, and oh so lip-smacking Sweet! Aaah yes, time to praise the almightly summer sippin’ thirst quencher, being served straight up G. Love and Special Sauce style, ice cool and always refreshing. On their second release for Brushfire Records, the Philly boys offer up Lemonade, a series of soul drenched tracks pouring out their blues infused hip-hop, which people have been trying to label for years. The best advice…don’t try to tame it or claim it; it’s simply their sonic trademark, instantly recognizable and addictively delicious.
Like a classic novel it all starts at a chance meeting one rainy, fall night in Boston, when fellow torchbearers of new roots Americana, Seth and Scott Avett of The Avett Brothers invite G. Love onto their tour bus after a gig to share their love of back road blues. This mutual affinity leads to G. Love sharing the stage with The Avett Brothers at a summer music festival both are playing. The collaboration, sounding so natural and right, deepens, so much so, eventually G. Love asks Scott and Seth Avett to not only play on his new record, he asks them to produce it as well.
Inspired by this shared musical heritage, the result is Fixin’ To Die, a collection of rearranged traditionals, a classic cover, and a slew of G. Love originals, many simmering for over a decade, all sharing a common goal: to strip away all pretense and capture the original spirit and sound G. Love has cultivated over his entire career but never fully embraced until now. It doesn't take long to tell that G. Love is one special find," wrote Tom Moon in The Philadelphia Inquirer. "He sings with a bluesman's authority, yet manages to avoid sounding like a student of the blues. His raps...are delivered with an uncommon confidence, as though the Philadelphia native knows the way to get attention is to whisper, not scream. And the supporting musicianship of Special Sauce adroitly follows its front man's stylistic change-ups."