Blues in Britain Magazine

May 01, 2005 | BY Mick Rainsford
Chris Bergson Band - Another Day
2 Shirts Records CD1002

Chris Bergson moved to New York in 1995, forging a reputation as a talented jazz guitarist backing artists like Annie Ross and Norah Jones. Bergson, however, had another love, blues and roots music offering him the opportunity to expand his musical repertoire and develop the highly personalized blend of blues, jazz and soul that makes Another Day such an outstanding set.

Bergson is accompanied by a stellar band that comprises Jay Collins (tenor sax), Chris Berger (bass) and Matt Wilson (drums), with Brian Charette guesting on organ (2 tracks); artists whose musical acumen provides the perfect foil for Bergson's deeply soulful baritone vocals and dynamic fretwork. The set opens with "Come And Gone" where Bergson?s soul infused vocals ride a funkily hypnotic Wolf styled riff replete with tantalizing guitar and smoky jazz inflected sax, reminding me of an urban reincarnation of RL Burnside or Junior Kimbrough. The wolf influence surfaces again on "Greyhound Station" where Collins' funky sax rightfully takes centre stage.

Haunting vocals and beautifully understated guitar permeate the moody minor key "High Above The Morning" and the entrancing "Three Sisters"; "Up In Buffalo" generates a mellow swing fired by Collins' jazz inflected sax and Bergson's melancholy guitar which melds the influences of Wes Montgomery and T-Bone Walker to perfection; whilst the title track is a moody blues in the "St James Infirmary" mould replete with baying sax and wistful vocals bathed by Charette's swirling organ.

Bergson is a hugely talented artist who will appeal to aficionados of most blues genres.

Rating: 9