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Friday, June 30, 2006


Indigenous "Chasing the Sun"

Guitarist Mato Nanji took his licks from blues-rock saint Stevie Ray Vaughn, who in turn took his from Jimi Hendrix who in turn . . . well, you get the picture. A listen to "Chasing the Sun" and the way he makes them come alive will make you glad Mato did cop those licks after all. Indigenous' brand of hard-rocking blues isn't about newness, anyway; it's about energy and authenticity. The quartet, comprising Nakota Sioux brothers Mato and Pte (on bass), sister Wanbdi (on drums) and cousin Horse, add a few keyboards and extra drums this time out. The sound, though, is still raw and live, with a visceral punch. The songs, except for the rollicking "Number Nine Train" and a pensive take on Dylan's "Born In Time," are down-to-earth originals by Mato.

The lean arranging gives him plenty of space to show off his amazing fretwork, especially on the instrumental "Out of Nowhere." Compared to their four previous albums, Mato never hurries his playing here. On "Feel Alright Now" and the opener "Runaway," he locks into an easy pace that conceals the nimble fingering. While Hendrix and Vaughn can be heard throughout Mato's guitarwork, that's a very good thing indeed.

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