Proud Mary – The Same Old Blues

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Album Review by Mark Bayross

Named after a Credence Clearwater Revival song and signed to Noel Gallagher’s Sour Mash label, Mancunian five-piece Proud Mary hardly represent a blast of innovation in the tired, insipid world of popular guitar music today. Calling their debut album THE SAME OLD BLUES doesn’t help much either.

If the thought of Ocean Colour Scene jamming with Paul Weller brings you out in a frenzy of excitement, then you’ll love this. But, as the blurred picture of some god-awful joss-stick burning strum-along on the inside cover, alongside one of the band sporting the kind of scissor-dodging monkey haircuts that idiots like Liam Gallagher think makes them look “creative”, this is so far removed from originality that you can practically hear the marketing departments of jeans companies rubbing their hands all over London.

Sure, recent single ALL GOOD THINGS revisits the territory well-trodden by The Verve in 1997 with some fairly pretty slide guitar, and there are smatterings of Neil Young and Stones boogie here and there (DON’T IT ALL LOOK UGLY, SOMEWHERE DOWN THE LINE), but, as the criminally boring opener GIVE A LITTLE LOVE shows, Proud Mary don’t really have the energy to convince me that they should exist.

They even cover the Stones’ SALT OF THE EARTH – and sound more worn out than Mick n’ Keef themselves. As the title track shuffles along behind singer Greg Griffin intoning “the same old blues that took me down that same old dusty road”, I’m left wondering what Proud Mary plan on not reinventing next – the Charleston?

1 star