Bob Weir & Ratdog
Evening Moods, Bob Weir’s first solo studio output since 1984, proves that some songs need years on the road before they should enter the studio. “Odessa” furthers Weir’s rep as a blues guitarist, as he chops off-the-wall licks on slide guitar while a horn section helps relate the story of an ornery woman: “Don’t need to make no baby/Already got a family/Talkin’ me and Odessa and her big old mouth make three.” Heavy riffs help propel the New Orleans whore story “October Queen,” while old songwriting partner John Barlow helps Weir sing of lost souls and found grace in “Lucky Enough.”
“Bury Me Standing,” with it’s moonless description of the old crossroads tale, anchors the album heavily: “Bury me standing/I been a lifetime on my knees.” Grateful Dead buddy Mickey Hart helps out on some cuts, most notably his co-written Dead tune “Corrina.” Some say Weir’s voice is regal, and while that may be pushing it, after a five-year wait his voice sounds strong. Likewise, Ratdog mesh as if they waited just the right amount of time to make Evening Moods.