Recensie: Richard Ray Farrell & The Leisure Men – Life Of Leisure


Richard Ray Farrell & The Leisure Men - Life Of Leisure

Richard Ray Farrell & The Leisure Men – Life Of Leisure
Format: CD / Label: Cambaya Records
Release: 2021

Text: Iain Patience

Richard Ray Farrell returns after a few years with a new album, ‘Life of Leisure’.

Based in southern Spain the US bluesman has steadily expanded his fan-base in recent years playing as a solo artist at times at major festivals across Europe and the USA. Farrell’s harp playing has often taken something of a back-seat in the past, though his powerful harpwork is always there and exhibits a mastery that may surprise many.

A huge fan of the late Paul Oscher, Muddy’s harpman over the years,  Farrell plays electric harp on a rack alongside his fretwork, which is as ever top-dollar here. Indeed, if anything, Farrell is on better form than ever with this release.

Seven of the eleven tracks here are self-penned while others include covers of Sonny Boy’s Please Forgive and Charles Sheffield’s It’s Your Voodoo Working, a killer track with truly outstanding harpwork throughout.

Pace varies with slower, down and dirty blues, traditional roots/country-blues touches and then gets ramped up with some excellent fretwork and howling harp that is inevitably gonna blow you away.

Farrell’s vocal delivery is spot-on and overall this is probably his best album to date and one that should satisfy blues-lovers everywhere. Recorded basically as a live project in Spain, the finishing touches and mastering were done back in the States.

‘Life of leisure’ is readily one of the best albums of the year 2021, an absolute blues triumph.  A truly wonderful offering from a major bluesman without doubt!

01. Don’t Judge by the Color
02. It’s Your Voodoo Working
03. One Last Look
04. The Way You Do
05. Livin’ the Life of Leisure
06. Blues Come Creepin’ In
07. Please Forgive
08. One of These Days
09. Build Myself a Cabin
10. So Sad at Day Break
11. Don’t Know About You