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Editorial Reviews

Revelator is the long-awaited, song-oriented debut album by the husband-wife team of singer/guitarist Susan Tedeschi and guitarist Derek Trucks. Filled with smoky, blues-dipped rockers and heart-stilling ballads that show off, respectively, the gutsier and softer side of Tedeschi's vocal ability, plus a series of emotive, story-telling solos shaped by Trucks's uncanny agility on slide-guitar, Revelator also serves to introduce the couple s new, 11-piece ensemble Tedeschi Trucks Band.

A dramatic leap forward for two of the music world's most dynamic performers, Revelator is a confident yet unforced triumph offering a cohesive vision: an idyllic, musical world in which the echoes of so many great traditions Delta blues and Memphis soul, Sixties rock and Seventies funk organically flow together, blending with an entirely original, modern sensibility.

In addition to the combined weight of Tedeschi and Trucks's equally renowned abilities, Revelator benefits from an impressive circle of talent that the two brought together. Trucks co-produced the album with multi-Grammy-winning engineer Jim Scott, whose genre-bending credits include popular albums by the Dixie Chicks, Johnny Cash, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Both Tedeschi and Trucks co-wrote the album's twelve new songs with an impressive list of experienced songwriters, including Jeff Trott, John Leventhal, David Ryan Harris and Sonya Kitchell; Gary Louris and Oliver Wood of the Jayhawks and the Wood Brothers, respectively; and old friends like guitarists Doyle Bramhall II and Eric Krasno (of Soulive), and band members Mike Mattison, Kofi Burbridge and Oteil Burbridge.

Most notably, Revelator features the newly formed Tedeschi Trucks Band, an eleven-member ensemble overflowing with talent and musical familiarity. Brothers Oteil Burbridge (noted for his years as bassist with the Allman Brothers Band) and Kofi Burbridge (longtime keyboardist/flutist with The Derek Trucks Band) have joined forces with a pair of drummers J. J. Johnson and Tyler Greenwell, trumpeter Maurice Brown, tenor saxophonist Kebbi Williams, trombonist Saunders Sermons, and harmony singers Mark Rivers and Mike Mattison. (Additionally, Ryan Shaw and David Ryan Harris supplied harmony vocals to various tracks on the album, and Alam Khan adds his masterful sarod playing to "These Walls".) The fact that this aggregation includes so many musicians related by experience and blood clearly adds to the notion of Revelator as a true group album, the product of a musical family.

1. Come See About Me
2. Don't Let Me Slide
3. Midnight in Harlem
4. Bound for Glory
5. Simple Things
6. Until You Remember
7. Ball and Chain
8. These Walls
9. Learn How to Love
10. Shrimp and Grits (Interlude)
11. Love Has Something Else to Say
12. Shelter

Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 7, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Masterworks
  • ASIN: B004RSCWZ2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (250 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,883 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 72 people found the following review helpful By G. E. Harrison on June 7, 2011
Format: Audio CD
As a fan of both Derek and Susan I was a bit dubious about them combining their individual bands into this extended 11-piece band. However, from the first track "Come See About Me" they hit the ground running - starting out with an acoustic slide intro before settling down into a blues-funk groove featuring Susan's wonderful vocals, Derek's peerless slide guitar and Kofi Burbridge on clavinet. The rest of the CD is of a similar high standard, with great songs, marvelous playing that is full of emotion but is also very subtle. The large line up is used wisely, the album doesn't feature the full band on every track and there is lots of space but the different elements add variety when necessary.

Although there are obviously similarities with both Derek and Susan's previous work, they have collaborated with others such as Jeff Trott, John Leventhal, David Ryan Harris, Sonya Kitchell, Oliver Wood, the Jayhawks' Gary Louris and Soulive's Eric Krasno to bring in some outside influences to the songwriting. Nevertheless, Mike Mattison's "Midnight in Harlem" (as featured in Clapton's Crossroads DVD) is one of the best songs here. The record was recorded in Derek and Susan's home studio in Florida and sounds great, it's also possibly the reason that Susan sounds so relaxed. I think that up to now she has never made an album that has really shown her true potential but I think that this one definitely does - she goes from a whisper to a scream and really sells every song, an outstanding vocal performance.

The album is so consistently good that I find it hard to pick a favourite track, although "Midnight in Harlem" is right up there, as is the restrained "These Walls" where Derek's guitar counterpoints Alam Khan's sarod.
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86 of 95 people found the following review helpful By Polar Bear on June 7, 2011
Format: Audio CD
When I found out that Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi were recording a blues album together I couldn't wait to hear it. Trucks is one of the best blues guitar players out there and Tedeschi has a beautiful voice with guitar talents of her own. From the opening chords of "Come See About Me" to the last notes of "Shelter", this is an amazing collection of tunes that has it all: blues, soul, rock, funk, and everything in between. Filled with blues-influenced rockers and soft, expressive ballads that show off Tedeschi's huge vocal range, plus a series of incredible solos featuring Trucks's outstanding slide-guitar, Revelator also introduces the new, 11-piece ensemble - Tedeschi Trucks Band. And they do not disappoint. "Bound for Glory" and "Learn How to Love" are high energy blues-infested rockers that will leave you with your mouth hanging open. "Midnight in Harlem" changes the mood with meaningful, introspective lyrics and soulful music. "These Walls" is a beautiful song with an uplifting message of day to day survival in our current harsh times. "Simple Things" marvels in the unasked joys of life that Tedeschi delivers with passion. The band is tight, the production is crisp and fresh and the songs knock you off your feet. I would recommend this to anyone!
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52 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Murpheus on June 7, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I cannot remember the last time that I've listened, again and again, so intently and with joy to a day-of release from Amazon. No need to be long-winded. We knew Tedeschi-Trucks mash-up would be tasty. Punchy, soulful horns are awesome, the dessert atop Susan's sassy, gospel-sexy vocals and Derek's' slide-guitar wizardry. Five stars? Hell, "Revelator" deserves 10.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Paige Ellen on June 7, 2011
Format: MP3 Music
I couldn't wait for this album to come out (I'm old, I still call them albums and records). On its own merits it is an excellent album with a slight problem with the mix on the horns from time to time, very minor. I never thought I would say this: there's too much mellow Susan Tedeschi on this effort; and way too little of DTB influence. I found it odd that the first selection that really grabbed me was #10, entitled "Shrimp and Grits interlude". It is the first time the Derek Trucks influence show. The final two tracks are more of what I expected. Soooo, if you are a fan of Susan's (and I am), most of this record with thrill you. If you are a fan of Derek's band and DT, it's a bit of a disappointment. So, it goes like this: great Susan Tedeschi mellow tracks (1-9) and great real mix of the two bands (tracks 10-12). Oh, and there is a secret track. When the last track, "Shelter," ends, there is about a 15 or so second blank space and then there is another four minutes of what you might have expected instrumentally.
Again, based on my expectations (three to 4 stars, on its own 5 stars.
Finally, if you want to know what this could have been, dig way back to 1969-70, find Cold Blood's first two albums (they are packaged together now) and you will have a sense of what I expected.
There are some mysteries here as well. The album is called "Revelator" but they don't cover that song. They need to have a long talk with Taj Mahal and Gillian Welch about that. Second mystery, they do a song called "Ball and Chain", that is apparently a new composition and has nothing to do with the Big Mama Thornton classic covered so well by the late, great Janis Joplin.
Overall, I'd say but it. the disc is great music, but be forewarned, if you are a fan of either or both of these artists and their bands individually, prepared to be surprised. I found a few listens to be quite helpful.
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