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On The Verge

3.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 1, 2016
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Making their Severn Records debut, the Fabulous Thunderbirds mark a new beginning with On the Verge, a departure for the blues rockers as they explore their soulful side. Front front man Kim Wilson notes, ''we're defining our own genre.'' With On the Verge the T-Birds have crafted a fresh sound, one that's sure to satisfy diehard fans while bringing new blood into the fold of the band's faithful legion.

Review

On The Verge will likely surprise casual fans of the Fabulous Thunderbirds (best known for their '80s hits Tuff Enuff and Wrap It Up) with a collection of mostly-original tunes mining a blend of Stax Records-styled R&B and soul as much as the Texas roadhouse blues that defined the group's '70s and '80s work. From the hopeful blues of I Want to Believe to the soulful ballad Do You Know Who I Am that tackles the hardships of American life in 2013, On The Verge is one of the T-Birds' best albums. Throughout it all, Kim Wilson sings and blows his blues harp with a level of soul and sophistication that is simply thrilling. --Desert Star Weekly, 3/13/12

Perhaps it shouldn't be a surprise that a band so often defined by its guitarists takes on a different character once the lead singer -- the only constant in the group since its beginnings in the mid-'70s -- definitively asserts his status as the band's leader, yet the change within the Fabulous Thunderbirds that can be heard on On the Verge, their 12th official studio album, is striking. The last time the Thunderbirds released a studio album was in 2005, during a stint when the great Austin guitarist Nick Curran was the sparring partner of vocalist and T-Bird linchpin Kim Wilson. In 2013, guitarists Johnny Moeller and Mike Keller, talented axemen both, now support Wilson and they do get a chance to flaunt their gifts on On the Verge, but the focus is firmly on songs and rhythm. It is surely a soul-blues album, often copping the cool, relaxed Memphis groove and reaching down to the gritty funk of Muscle Shoals. This not only gives Wilson room to stretch vocally -- he's supple and sensitive on Lovin' Time -- but this means On the Verge is a richer, fuller album than many latter-day Thunderbirds albums, because this isn't just dedicated to slow, swaying seduction, there are wah-wah-fueled workouts, a bit of social protest, some jazzy flourishes, and, yes, a bit of the Texas blues that the T-Birds call their own. But what's striking about On the Verge isn't just the versatility, it's the ease: Kim Wilson doesn't sound desperate to stretch out; he's merely comfortable leading his band toward all the soulful sounds he's loved. The result is a thoroughly satisfying album, a long-delayed but very welcome flipside to the rollicking Painted On. --Stephen Thomas Erlewine, AllMusic.com

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Product details

  • Audio CD (July 1, 2016)
  • Original Release Date: July 1, 2016
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: SEVERN RECORDS
  • ASIN: B00AKZ8E0I
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,446 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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on April 28, 2013
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