Ancient Victories News, Autumn 2009
Brian Butler: WAIT ALL NIGHT
Reviewed by Chris Lunn

Blues based singer, guitarist and composer Brian Butler showed up at some acoustic open mikes in the 70's and 80's. He was also pursuing and making a name in the electric blues-based band scene. Here he is on acoustic guitar, piano and vocals. The opening lope of "Second Line Beat" mixes the early acoustic blues players and the more 60-70's modern blue framing as he sings about New Orleans and the famous "second line". His vocals are crystal clear in the diction with just a fine crack on the edge. He penned this and six others. More traditional blues picking in a upbeat almost boogie style nails "The Future Ain't What It Used To Be". Nice thematic, and the guitar picking is a lesson on how to play this style clean and quick. His guitar on JB Lenior's "Slow Down Woman" is very reminiscent of Brownie McGhee and the late-career Broonzy. His blues piano is clean and rolls well on his "When The Wind Blows". Acoustic piano vocal blues are a lost art, but are in very good hands here.

Butler changes the blues boogie runs on each phrase and mixes the approach and brings home the vocal. Very nicely done. He picks many styles like Piedmont in his Inconsequential". I always loved Leroy Carr and his "Night Time Is The Right Time" is a classic done by many acoustic musicians and electric blues bands. Butler takes a nice slow reading, soulful approach, again with just pure clarity on the words. Following that with Johnny Cash's "Big River" using an upbeat finger picking acoustic style blues really works. The piano strides slowly to take you to "place Pigalle". You hear the music and words of that establishment and see the people described. On this Butler reminds me of Michigan's Mr. B in piano and vocals. style. "Trouble In Mind, another classic is taken mainly in the 50's Broonzy styles (Broonzy wrote this). The tongue in cheek laid-back upbeat picking and singing on "Serious Business" delivers a smile and top tap to your demeanor. Butler never pushes, just delivers quality. Driving, acoustic, expressive, guitar lines make "Hard To Keep" a modern message of life, love and money.

Superb collection of blues from a blues player who was always on his game, and his maturity just shines through. Would have liked to see a bit more packaging and details on the jacket cover. Otherwise, don't change anything, just let me listen and thoroughly enjoy.