THE DEAL: Bluesman in need of a soul transplant.
THE GOOD: Good thing his name is on the cover. Otherwise, you wouldn't recognize his voice. On his latest solo release, Gregg Allman doesn't sound like himself. Sounding like a bad Robert Plant impersonation, Allman limps through a sampler of blues classics that deserve more than the lip service he gives them. "Checkin' On My Baby" has some guts, sounding a bit like the Gregg of old, as does "Tears, Tears, Tears." The arrangements are great, thanks to Doyle Bramhall's guitar and T Bone Burnett as well as some key tinkling courtesy of Dr. John. But vocally, this is Gregg Allman lite.
THE BAD: The main problem here is there just isn't any oomph in his vocals. To be fair, this was recorded right before Allman got his new liver, and, by his own admission, he was a very sick man.
THE VERDICT: Allman used to sing the blues so well you could hear the chains he was bound with rattling as he tried to bust loose. Now that he's sober and revitalized with a new purification device, maybe he can get his soul back so we can hear it again.
Rounder; Release date: Jan. 18, 2011