The review was written in German. Here is a translation to English
"Southern Rock's best kept secret!" This is the announcement on the homepage of the label Juke Joint500 about Alligator Jackson. A quartet from Huntington, West Virginia, which was more project than band. The present recordings were made between 2005 and 2009 and were - as befits a band - recorded on tape in the south of the USA, at the East Craft Studios in Vass, North Carolina. A tour was planned, but it never happened and they never gave a single concert.
Why some of these studio recordings now appear as vinyl and CD compilations after more than ten years becomes clear quite quickly. Because already the first song on the A-side "Liquid Courage" is an absolute burner and trendsetting for the whole album. The Twin Guitars clang and howl in stereo mix, tangible rhythms, a Southern Rock voice of the first order, supported by soulful chorus girls. "Swamp Justice" starts with voodoo wise percussion, goes down a gear in tempo but not in passionate performance and the short crisp guitar solos literally burn out of the speakers. The title song tells us what a southern musical barbeque is all about: electric guitars in heavy rock'n'roll mode, hard drum beats, howling slides, fiery melody and a creaky singer. "Enjoy The Ride" starts with completely overwound electric guitars, which quickly take the curve to a funky midtempo burner, a feast! The "Repo Man" continues the Heavy Southern Rock mode of the title track. "Pull No Punches" sounds like Hooker'n'Heat jamming with Lynyrd Skynyrd, yeah, that's what it's all about! With feverish hands we change the LP side, which spits out the next Southern happiness: "Blood On The Wall"! Again pure Skynyrd magic, also "Hanging Judge" is touched and inspired by that spirit. Risen neck hair and goose bumps! "Mr. Bouncer" reconciles acoustic with electric guitars, wonderful harmony voices and a melody through which a gentle breeze of southern wind blows, reminding us of "Melissa" by the Allman Brothers. Wonderful! On "All Hell's Breaking Loose" the Southern is fired by Blues Rock. The acoustic introduces the song "Alligator Jackson", it remains melodic, while the slide points towards a sunny blue sky. At the end the "Spirit Of The Wild" shuffles us towards the run-out groove, one last time the Alligator shows us his sharp teeth. The yellow-red, almost fire spitting album artwork becomes the mirror of these 12 killer tracks.
Why the band does not exist anymore is a mystery. Maybe a success of this compilation will help to reunite the band or it could herald a Southern Rock Revival, for which JukeJoint500 could be the forerunner with its excellent LPs. If you have even a little interest in Southern Rock, there is no way around the releases of JukeJoint500 in the last months. This is where the real, true stuff is sold: "Mo Peaches", "Tennessee Champagne" and those very Alligator Jackson! You don't believe me? Then listen to this great stuff and you will be converted!