Babajack – Running Man – Running Rooster Records
“Running Man” is the Babajack sound encapsulated into 10 tracks that ebb and flow pulling you into the Babajack sphere so that you are entwined in modern music that is so firmly rooted in the early blues and the drumming have the echoes of distant African shores. Once again a beautiful, musical album, full of autumnal mellow fruitfulness, whilst inside the lyrics and the phrasing of the vocals and instruments is a harder edge. The album introduces a new venture for the duo of Becky and Trevor that is the heart and soul of Babajack they are joined by Tosh Murase (Drums) & Adam Bertenshaw (bass) for half of the tracks, this format works as well in the studio as it does live; they give Becky a freedom to explore the vocals without the ties of providing the percussive sounds. The opening and title track sets a scene as a story telling tradition through song is unveiled, the listen picks up the fear of the unknown, running but cannot escape reflecting the original inspiration for the song where Becky and her son were running from an angry-looking storm cloud when out in the French countryside which was always going to drench it was inevitable that there was not escape. Excitingly on the studio album Julia Palmer-Price (Cello) adds some glorious chords that send a chill up the spine and reach deep into your musical lexicon of sounds, the cello works especially well on ‘Coming Home’. The main component of the other tracks is that glorious sound of Becky’s vocals and percussive skills, with Trevor weaving into the mix his effortless guitar and sharp harmonica playing as demonstrated so well on ‘Death Letter’; a favourite live and a studio classic. The new format has given Babajack a release of fresh energy, this is a modern blues sound that retains the integrity of traditional blues telling a story with strong earthy rhythms, as seen on ‘Every Day the Same’ with the line the “Money Man Comes” which Becky brings to the vocals a sense of fear we have all felt; this is a track in which Trevor’s harmonica combined with the cello reinforces the despair and frantic feeling of the lyrics. This is a strong album made possible by the support of the phalanx of Babajack fans – if I was going to change something the last track of the ten would have been ‘Hammer and Tongs’ as the mix of vocals and harp are simply delicious the memory of this would last long after the last notes fade. This is the definitive Babajack album, why Running Man manages to capture the energy of a live concert there is an inherent energy captured in the CD case that is released every-time the music starts up whatever the track.. and definitely on of the top 2013 albums.