CD review by John Luttrell Host/Exec. Producer Full-Time Blues radio show - Evansville, IN In the End...And Even More Mosaic Music (2008 Reissue)
Bobby Dirninger, the wonderful producer of Zora Young’s hit Delmark Records released The French Connection, originally released In The End in 2006. It is a great example of the self-described «French Blues Artist’s» passion for telling a story with music. In 2008, Mosaic Music reissued In The End...And Even More with an additional seven tracks of mostly live material. Mosaic handled the distribution of the album in Western Europe, and Dirninger recently told me in a letter that they are still trying to find distribution stateside. I can tell you that I would love for someone to grab the bull by the horns and distribute this record in the U.S. In The End is a fantastic release that spans genres, including Blues, Folk, Jazz, Country, and World music. It starts with the title cut, a mid-tempo tune with great guitar and pedal steel. It’s got a country feel and Dirninger’s gruff vocals sound like the more recent Bob Dylan vocal work at times. Bobby Dirninger sites Dylan as one of his major influences, and that is very noticeable on tracks like «In the End», «House of Blues», and «Rollin’ Round Mississippi». At times Dirninger sounds like other singer-songwriters, such as John Mellencamp and Bruce Springsteen. If you like these artists, as well as the Blues, this is a fantastic record for you. Unfortunately, the liner notes and credits for In The End...And Much More aren’t specific, meaning some of the folks providing some of the standout instrumental work on the album can’t properly get their due. «Gogo Town», for example, has some great slide guitar over the last half of the song. «The Dude Who Shot John Wayne Down» is my personal favorite track on the record. The sounds created on this song, from the strong bass line, to the Native American style chanting, transports you to the old West. «C’est La Vie» is a cool, original little tune, not a cover of Chuck Berry’s classic about the «teenage wedding». «Strange Attitudes» is a rocker. As I mentioned before, Dirninger is a wonderful storyteller, and «The Old Cafe Downtown» is a good example of that. Heavy on piano and reminiscing lyrics, it’s a beautiful lament. «Tom’s Band» is the World music infused track on In The End. It has a swirling melody, filled with mandolin, violin, and percussion. «House of Blues» may be the closest to the genre Dirninger comes on the original nine songs from In The End. That all changes in the bonus tracks, where Dirninger’s love for the Blues is better displayed. «House of Blues» features some more of Dirninger’s Dylanesque vocal work over some terrific barrelhouse piano and saxophone work. The last of the original nine tracks is the guitar and harmonica number «Rollin’ Round Mississippi» By this point, the album is a little more than 36 minutes long. The folks at Mosaic decided to include the seven bonus tracks, the majority of which are live, which pushes the total running time of In The End...And Even More to nearly 64 minutes. Bonus tracks include a Jazzy, live rendition of «Black Night» a cover of Big Joe Williams «Baby Please Don’t Go» (renamed «Honey Please Don’t Go» here). The track features a unique arrangement that centers around a pair of awesome sitar solos. Other covers on the album include a Dirninger’s piano arrangements on «I Put A Spell On You» and «Worried Life Blues». There’s also a recording from radio station WPNA of Bob Dylan’s «Baby I’m In the Mood» done with acoustic guitar and harmonica. In The End...And Even More wraps up with the Bobby Dirninger original «Pacomoon Annie». All in all, In The End...And Even More is a great disc with a wide variety of song styles to choose from. It’s a great eclectic record with a lot to offer the listener. It will be interesting to see if there is a future for the disc here in America. Until then, listen for track from the record on Full-Time Blues. Standout Tracks: «The Dude Who Shot John Wayne Down», «In the End», «Black Night», and «I Put A Spell On You».