Now 72 years old, guitar legend Robin Trower just keeps on rolling, Time and Emotion being his 22nd studio album in a solo career that began way back in 1973 with Twice Removed From Yesterday. A quick follow-up to 2016's Where Are You Going To, this latest doesn't necessarily offer up any surprises, but any fan of the guitar icon isn't really looking for any, instead wanting more of the bluesy rock that we've come to expect from him since he first burst on the scene. Along with bassist/vocalist Livingstone Brown and drummer Chris Taggart, the trio format is still intact, with Trower handling all guitars and the lion's share of the lead vocals, something he's been doing the last decade or so. I'm still not sold 100% on Robin Trower as lead vocalist, but I will say his vocals have gotten much better these last few releases, and are probably at their best here on Time and Emotion. What continues to astound however is his guitar work, which is just as fiery and perfect as ever.
Images of "Benny Dancer" from 1983's fine Back It Up album can be heard on the scorching, atmospheric slow blues of "Return in Kind", and while Robin doesn't use the wah-wah quite as dominantly as he did back in the day, its sparse appearance here is more then plenty effective. What there is plenty of on Time and Emotion is groove, evident by uptempo rock & funk tracks "If You Believe in Me", "The Land of Plenty", and the nasty "I'm Gone", each one littered with tasty licks dripping with Trower's legendary tone and locked in rhythms. For those who gravitate towards the Univibe soaked atmospheric side to Trower's repertoire (think In City Dreams and Caravan to Midnight era) check out the fine "You're the One" and the dreamy "What Was I Really Worth To You" for some wonderful, Hendrix inspired guitar majesty. For straight blues, it doesn't get much better than "Make Up Your Mind", and Robin's decades long ability to fuse blues, rock, and funk pops large on the groove laden rocker "Try Love".
One of the things that's so appealing about Time and Emotion is the amount of variety it contains, much more so than some of the recent Trower output, which goes a long way in helping this new release become one of his more enjoyable efforts in quite some time. The guitar work is as wonderful as always, the vocals are solid, and the songs offer a plethora of styles, so make sure you don't miss this little gem from one of our bona-fide musical treasures.
See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!
1. The Land Of Plenty
2. What Was I Really Worth To You
3. I'M Gone
4. Bitten By The Snake
5. Returned In Kind
6. If You Believe In Me
7. You'Re The One
8. Can'T Turn Back The Clock
9. Make Up Your Mind
10. Try Love
11. Time And Emotion