By Ljubinko Zivkovic, Rock At Night Amsterdam
Review: Jared James Nichols’ self-titled album-Release date: January 13, 2023
Back in the late sixties, as the decade was about to be over, it seemed that the blues rock explosion was on the vane, and many predicted that in a year or two, ‘the fad’ would be over.
Five decades or so later, not only is ‘the fad’ of blues rock still around but seems to be gathering new steam. What with Marcus King. Gary Clark Jr., Tedeschi/Trucks Band, Dan Auerbach, both solo and with Black Keys and quite a few others. All of the above named have that sound in their pinky toes and are almost perfect guitar slingers.
Well, if some forgot, since he is now at his third (this time around, self-titled album) Jared James Nichols certainly belongs to this ever-growing list.
It is all there- the meticulous combination of blues and rock, or to be more precise, rock variations on the blues, excellent songwriting and vocals, and above all some incredible guitar-slinging. After all, you don’t just get to be Gibson brand ambassador, unless you know your way around the guitar even in your sleep.
The thing is, the album was also recorded live in the studio, so the only tricks here are connected to Nichols’ guitar playing and the quality of the rhythm section behind him. Oh, add to the incredible quality of his guitar playing the fact that only a few months before recording the album Nichols could only look at his guitar, as he was sidelined with a broken arm.
You can start anywhere with this album, but the two opening singles, “Down The Drain” and “Hard Wired” are probably the best starting points.