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Kings of Cannelburg Road
Artist: Back Porch Pilgrims
Label: Flat Rock Records
Length: 13/58:30

Back Porch Pilgrims is basically Ken Tucker, former guitarist for Larry Norman, Josh Hammond (guitar, harmonica), and Tim Bushong (guitars, drums, bass).  Tucker is the front man, playing a variety of guitars, and singing most of the leads.  BPP embraces the blues rock of the '70's, no coincidence considering Tucker's time spent with Larry Norman.  Make no mistake: they guys can flat out play.

Southern rock and blues is the order of the day.  "Cannelburg Road" and "Flat Rock" both refer to areas in rural southern Indiana.  "Hang My Head," "King is Coming," and "Watch What You're Doing" emphasize this, featuring guitar riffs a plenty, and harmonicas.  "Wayfaring Stranger" uses nice harmonies between Tucker and Hammond.

"Loser's Ball" is the biggest departure, and almost would fit in on a Willie Nelson album.  It does, however, reveal that higher ranges are not a strength for Tucker.  A couple of covers, "Property of Jesus" (Bob Dylan), and "Jesus Gonna Be Here" (Tom Waits) point to the variety in Tucker's influences.  The album is rounded out by three
live tracks.

Kings of Cannelburg Road comes a pleasant surprise, a throwback to old school rock that should be pleasing to fans of '70's classic rock, southern rock, and blues.  Tucker justifies Larry Norman's faith expressed in the liner notes, where Norman voices a desire to produce Tucker's next studio session, should his health allow him to do so.

Brian A. Smith
28 July 2005



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