Tough

September 15, 2009 | Format: MP3

$9.49
Also available in CD Format
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: September 15, 2009
  • Release Date: September 15, 2009
  • Label: Eagle Records/ Eagle Rock (US)
  • Copyright: (C) 2009 Eagle Records/Eagle Rock (US)
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 54:51
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B002NZVU4U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #92,860 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
54%
4 star
38%
3 star
8%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 13 customer reviews
Great music you will not be disappointed.
billybones
I like the booklet as well, describing what each song is all about.
Regnal
I've been a Mayall fan since the late 60s.
Ray the Rat

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By G. E. Harrison on September 16, 2009
Format: Audio CD
Apparently this is John's 57th studio album and while there is nothing here that compares to his best 60s releases this is a great-sounding, consistent set of material produced by Mayall himself. The band consists of guitarist Rocky Athas, bassist Greg Rzab, drummer Jay Davenport and Tom Canning on keyboards - with Mayall playing harmonica, organ and guitar.

John also writes three new songs "Slow Train To Nowhere" an organ-based slow burner, "That Good Old Rockin' Blues" and "Tough Times Ahead" a commentary on the current world economy. For someone in his mid-70s Mayall still has the puff to play harp on many numbers and the band support him well, with Canning's keyboards being excellent throughout and Rocky Athas contributing good guitar, without being outstanding. Mayall's voice isn't as strong as it was but in some ways that adds to its charm on some numbers. My favourite track is the acoustic(ish) "How far down" (by Nashville's Brian Langlinais), with "Number's down" and the jazzy, organ-led "An eye for an eye" not far behind.

On first listen I was going to give this 3 stars but it has grown on me and I think it definitely deserves four - a good set of songs, with Mayall and the band all on good form. John manages to break some new ground here but there are also nods to the past and it definitely has that distinctive John Mayall sound.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Ray the Rat on November 8, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've been a Mayall fan since the late 60s. Yeah, I'm old. Age notwithstanding, this album is very little changed in concept from many others he's done going back to Turning Point. Mayall writes songs about what he knows: his life. He wrote about his previous loves including the mysterious Nancy T, his visits to California an relocation there, his involvement with Canned Heat and Frank Zappa in the Canyons of the LA basin.

Sometimes it's almost painful to hear such openness about a person's life, but that's his style. And it hasn't changed a bit in "Tough." Several of the songs relate to his recovery from alcoholism (and I can relate to that), others about the current state of affairs in the world...the same basic stuff he wrote about relating to his service in Korea. And while it's sometimes brutally honest, there isn't a bad song on the album, I'd be hard pressed to say which is the best or rank them; they're all good. I can't say that about too many albums by any performer.

I think Mayall deserves 4 stars for putting an album that has brand new music (or brand new covers), not just a "greatest hits." Yeah, some songs are recycled, but they're done well. And I give him the 5th star for being able to put forth a high-energy release like this at the age of 75.

The only thing I could wish for would be Larry Taylor on bass. But Greg Rzab does a good job, if not quite as technical as Taylor. (I'm a bassist and find Taylor to be a demigod with 4 strings.)

To be honest, I wasn't overjoyed with it when I first heard it, but as another reviewer said, it grows on you. But it's much better than fungus which will do the same thing.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Regnal on November 21, 2009
Format: Audio CD
One cannot go wrong with this CD's music. I like the booklet as well, describing what each song is all about. Mayall shares his opinions and feelings about tough (good title) issues of life, he even cares about the recent state of terrible economy. Great new release from the ageless artist.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Harding VINE VOICE on March 1, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
How long will John Mayall keep cranking out great albums? Here he is, in his mid-70s, with an excellent new group of musicians, pumping out the music as though he were fifty years younger. Tough is Mayall's first one in a couple of years and the first with an entirely new band in a long time.
Whether you prefer rock, a blues shuffle, or slow-smoking blues, there is something for you here. To me, the best cuts on the album are the jaunty An Eye For An Eye and its shuffling equal The Sum of Something, but I also thrill to the crisp, driving rock of Nothing To Do With Love and Train to My Heart as well as to the smoky blues of Slow Train to Nowhere and Tough Times Ahead.
Since I bought Tough, I've played it for a lot of friends and everyone of them found themselves fired up by its energy.
If you are one of those who thinks John Mayall is a relic of the sixties, think again. After a mid-career rough patch he has released nothing but quality albums followed by more quality albums. Listen to Tough and hear what I mean!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Paul A. Penczek on March 9, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I own all Mayall's records and DVDs. Tough is the best in a decade if not more and can easily compete with his best albums from late 60's early 70s'. It sounds modern, but is measured. Paradoxically, with age Mayall's singing got even better. Somehow the mood of the album and the singing remind me Bring 'Em In, another classic from a seasoned bluesmen.

Definitely recommended, not only for Mayall's fans.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Lloyd on September 24, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I really like this album. I have been a John Mayall fan for decades but this is the first new album in a while that I listen to a lot. I heard the band live at the North Atlantic Blues Festival in Rockland Maine and was very impressed with the great instrumental virtuosity of all the players. The bassest is totally solid, able to play great grooves and can even do some cool solo work. The guitar player rocks and really knows his stuff. I heard that he studied with Stevie Ray Vaughn and I think he plays as well as SRV. The keyboardist (not John) is hot and adds a lot to the sound without making it muddy. John is still the master of the Blues harp as far as I am concerned and also doubles well on the keyboards. John's voice is sounding well worn but he still has the rythem and can belt them out. Throw in a very good drummer and you have an exceptionally tight band. I love the songs too with more modern selections that have great beats and poignant lyrice. I also like that the songs are not downers and leave me feeling good. Way to go John!
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