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coverpic flag US - Illinois - Full Moon 54 - 03/09/01

Cash Audio
The Orange Sessions
Orange Recordings

Cash Audio (who according to themselves "had to change their name from Cash Money due to some bullshit lawsuit from some half-assed, no talent rap label"), have been serving up hot plates of revved up blues since 1994. This duo from sweet home Chicago obviously think that just a guitarist and a drummer is more than plenty. Guitarist John Humphrey doesn't even bother to sing on more than half of the songs, leaving any potential listener wondering if this formula can hold the interest through this 12 song collection. The CD version of The Orange Sessions consists of the 7-track 10" with the same title, but with an extra track, the 4 songs from Letter to Stax (2*7"), and an interview.

Trying to describe Cash Audio, I'd like to start with a couple of quotes. All Music Guide call them "a poor man's Jon Spencer Blues Explosion," while Billboard magazine say they are like "Stevie Ray Vaughan on a bender." Hence we can deduce that Cash Audio's music is placed somewhere on the Vaughan/Spencer axis. Cash Audio are not as extreme, noisy and experimental as Spencer, they play a straighter type of trashy, high octane blues, but they are just as cool. Humphrey is not as technically flashy as Vaughan, but several of the songs and guitar chops here would fit right into Vaughan's repertoire. Vaughan is also a better singer than Humphrey, but when things get down to business, Cash Audio can match both Vaughan's and Spencer's groove intensity.

The questions that remains is, should you worry about the drums-guitars setup being too limited to sustain interest through a whole CD? I don't think so. Even if not all songs are coming through like they could have (live they probably do), I got to smile most of the time when listening to these dusty blues brothers. They may not like to called a blues band, but they are close enough for the cigar.

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