“Crest Of A Wave: The Best Of Rory Gallagher” by Rory Gallagher

Artist: Rory Gallagher
Title: “Crest Of A Wave: The Best Of Rory Gallagher”
Label: Eagle Records
Release Date: 8/25/2009
Genre: Blues Rock
Rating: 4.5/5

Let’s start off by thanking the fine folks of Eagle Rock Entertainment for breathing some new life into many classic performers and their incredible contributions to music. They’ve been keeping our personal music and video libraries stocked to overflowing by their regular dishing out of legacy concert films and even bringing some classic albums out from under the bed and back into the public eye. They continue the process with this amazing double CD release that celebrates the music of Blues-Rock guitarist Rory Gallagher and if you are someone like me who needs a healthy education in the man’s accomplishments, well these 24 tracks are bound to get you onto the right path. The singer and axe-slinger hailed from Ireland, and sadly left us in 1995 after complications from a liver transplant at the young age of 47. Despite the loss, the man’s music continues to impact the lives of innumerable guitarists of note and many of their acolytes and this will allow his name to carry on for generations. The compilation scans the musician’s fifteen albums and from them deducts the live releases which give us a solid nine to work with. Add to this a few of his touching acoustic numbers and you have a really great place to begin your own musical journey into his career or if you are one of the existing diehards that has the whole enchilada, you have a cool disc to bring along with you on trips in the car. I will assume that by leaving the live releases material off this particular release that we shall find a “Best Of Rory Live” coming up next. There is no material from his band Taste and that makes sense since it precedes his solo work releases by a couple of years. Similar to my views on their hopeful release of a live compilation sometime going forward, perhaps if the demand is high enough they will look into doing something for Taste. I would like that since it is a band that was clearly before my time and not something I focused on much as my own interests developed.

There is a great booklet enclosed that lets the listeners hear some thoughts from Gallagher’s own nephew and also from a core writer from Billboard Magazine so it’s totally relevant narrative when it comes down to it. I had heard that some viewed this as an unnecessary purchase if you had all of the musicians stuff and I must say I disagree with that standpoint. If you are someone like me who doesn’t have enough of a background on him then this is a superb collection and since it was all relatively “new music” to my own ears I could not determine what I liked more. There is a lot to absorb and if you are a fan of Blues based guitar driven Rock then you need to snare this while you can. I recommend this for all those fans that worship at the feet of the likes of Satriani, Johnson, and Moore and feel that they will feed their own thirst for quality music by owning this one. Eagle Vision has released an amazing collection of live footage of Gallagher and one solid recommendation is the “Rockpalast” multi-DVD set. That is well worth the price.

Track Listing:
1. Follow Me
2. Shinkicker
3. Do You Read Me
4. Bought & Sold
5. Loanshark Blues
6. In Your Town
7. Calling Card
8. Million Miles Away
9. Walk On Hot Coals
10. I Fall Apart
11. Tattoo’d Lady
12. Crest Of A Wave
13. Bad Penny
14. Overnight Bag
15. Philby
16. Shadow Play
17. Moonchilda
18. They Don’t Make Them Like You Anymore
19. Edged In Blue
20. Wheels Within Wheels
21. Out On The Western Plain
22. Out Of My Mind
23. Barley And Grape Rag
24. Lonesome Highway

Official Website: http://www.rorygallagher.com

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