Today, we’re pleased to help bring a little more mojo into your life with the launch of Mojo Risin’, an occasional series that will focus on recognizing and helping to spread the word about some of the rising stars and lesser known names of the genre that come across our radar. Some of those acts may be quite well known in their own regions but not all that familiar to others around the world, such as is apparently the case with our inaugural featured artist, 22-year-old blues-rocker Lewis Hamilton, who has already been nominated for multiple British Blues Awards since forming his band in 2010 and has just released his fourth album, Shipwrecked.
Here’s one of the bluesiest tracks from that album, a cover of the classic “John the Revelator” that features some stinging guitar from Hamilton, although we have to confess to also really digging a few of the other tunes here, including the breezy, rootsy Trigger Hippy-ish closer “Water’s Edge” that’s guaranteed to lure you in with its harmonious vocals and uplifting acoustic guitar strains that together give this song just as refreshing a sound as its lyrics, and the catchy, Oli Brown-like “Sticks and Stones”. The latter is just one of several simmering rockers you’ll hear on the album, along with, for example, the opening “Old Faces” and easy-on-the-ears ballad “Head for the Hills”, with other tracks ranging from the quiet, acoustic “Blame” and slow drifting blues of “Stormy Seas” to the harmonica- and effects-laced grooves of “Iceberg Blues” and alt-rocker “Long Way Home”.
Filled with Hamilton’s smooth vocals and captivating grooves, this is a strong, balanced outing that’s plenty energetic but never too heavy or otherwise over-the-top, allowing Hamilton to show a maturity beyond his years. Fans of acts such as Davy Knowles/Back Door Slam, King King, John Mayer, Bad Company, and Oli Brown especially will want to check this one out, although we’d have to think that Shipwrecked is one that just about anybody wouldn’t mind being stranded on a desert island with.