In the Jukebox: Cotton Blue Band 

A review of the latest disc from Gator Rob and Debbie

Cotton Blue Band
Like a Howling Wolf
(independent)

Edisto Island's Cotton Blue Band has been delivering twangy, swampy blues for years. Their seventh album is no exception to their reign.

Guitarist Gator Rob belts out songs about his loves, losses, woes, and the time in-between. Detroit Debbie's bass provides a peppy rhythm. Rob may be signing about the blues, but the album ranges from blues to rock sounds with a Southern feel.

Tracks like "Hold On" and "One-Eyed Catfish" present a jazzier, more melancholy touch to round out the upbeat feel. "Swamp Gumbo," with its harmonic melody and soprano vocals, seems to be the album's weak point, lacking in emotion. But Rob and Debbie pick it back up and provide the great mix of rock, jazz, and blues.

The album is packed with amusing lyrics, but the singing seems slightly subdued. Rob's voice has a raspy, swampy feel, but he's not quite "like a howling wolf" — at least not until the closing track, "Looking for Time," where he lets his voice ring out in a desperate howl. (cottonblueband.com)

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