British bluesman Snowy White really has nothing to prove after a career that’s seen him plying his career in a variety of top-drawer posts over the best part of fifty years; In 2022 he’s back with a new solo album, Driving on the 44; it’s a record that holds no surprises for seasoned White watchers, sure, but on the other hand you get the feeling that the man’s niche audience wouldn’t want it any other way.
So, Driving on the 44 features another ten tracks all built to highlight White’s languorous lead style, played out across a range of backdrops from the classic blues of Blues 22 to the harder, more playfully styled title track wherein White throws in a cheeky little harmony guitar break to keep those who remember his tenure in Thin Lizzy happy.
Long time fans will focus in on ‘archetypal’ Snowy songs like Ain’t No Secret, wherein the protagonist weaves a tale of woe with his world-weary croon, the storytelling interspersed with tasteful licks and a woozy backbeat supplied by drummer Thomas White and augmented by keysmen Ferry Lagendijk and perennial White sideman Max Middleton.
Despite the slowhanded nature of his material, White himself is showing no signs of decelerating at age seventy four; This is the third album he’s released since Sentinel Daily started in 2016, and like the others, although it’s appeal might seem limited to an audience that’s as venerable as the man himself, there’s an undeniable class that courses through the material here that deserves to be heard far and wide. White is perhaps the last of the great British bluesmen, but his legacy goes far beyond the comparative ghetto of that genre. He’s a true giant of rock, and this album once again underlines that fact with some of the man’s most impressive playing – try Keep On Flying for size, for instance – in recent times. Give it a listen and tell me I’m wrong.
Driving on the 44 releases on July 22nd.