Album Review: Black Joe Lewis - Electric Slave


Electric Slave • Black Joe Lewis • Score: 9 • Vagrant Records • Producers: John Congleton, Stuart Sikes

Fuzz guitars, Stax horn arrangements and a raw garage sound permeate Electric Slave. Lewis’ third studio album is a provocative blend of garage-punk and the ‘60s R&B that brought the band to fame. You don’t come to this party for poetics––Lewis barks, hollers and growls explicit lyrics about harsh times, women and money. Electric Slave is edgy grunge-R&B that frees itself from the soul novelties heard on earlier recordings. Most of the album is vocally unintelligible, but it’s the exuberance of this tight and talented band that hooks you. Electric Slave blends disparate ingredients to create a sound that is downright stimulating and raucous. – Oscar Jordan