Mario Bradley – Rhythm Junction
Pink’ n’ Black Records. PBCD 007
Mario Bradley was born in Galway in the Irish Republic and it played of the double bass in several rockabilly groups like The Marvels, The Blue Ridge Mountain Boys and The Bootleggers before learning how to play of other instruments and building its own studio of recording. It is there that he recorded in 1998 its first album «Shake it don’ t break it» an album of 12 titles including 9 compositions. Mario plays there of all the instruments except the saxophone held by Russell Bradley (an homonymic friend). This first album was a true success mixing hypnotic rockabilly, tough rock’ n’roll and swingin’ jive. Since then, nothing. We just knew thanks to his website that Mario was working on a second album but this last was done more than to wait. But finally, the brand new «Rhythm Junction”is out and deliver the same scientist mixes, the same receipt which had made the savour of the first.
Faultfinders will be able to reproach this second opus for being a kind of carbon copy of the first and they will not be wrong but Mario overcomes so well this difficult combination between various styles and compositions (12 out of 16 titles of which some are co-signed with Volker Houghton) that I again let myself embark with the first title «Hey Baby», a wild, and violent rockabilly haunted by the cavernous vocal of Mario which always remind Hardrock Gunter one of its most obvious influences and to which he pays a vibrating homage with the cover of «Whoo! I Mean Whee!».And with Mario there’s no time to rest or have a nap: all the titles are pure energy and it is not with “Bip Bop Baby”, “Spellbound”, “Metronome Mama” or “Rhythm Train” (which can make you think of a band like «Johnny Bach and his Moonshine Boozers») that you’re gonna stop of boppin’. The Jump-Blues & Jivers as «Hep To The Boogie», “Mabel”, “Beale Street” or “Bye Bye Boogie” are also effective to make you dance. The only “cool” one with a country flavour is “Long Time Gone”.An excellent album for those which are not afraid to maltreat their ears, stomp their feet and wet their shirt!
David “Long Tall” Phisel