‘Blak and Blu’ Gary Clark Jr.
The much-anticipated first full-length album from guitar wiz Gary Clark Jr. opens with ... a horn fanfare. That takes brass.
Clark has built a considerable reputation on the strength of his bluesy fretwork, but Blak and Blu is no guitar showcase. Instead, Clark engages in confusing genre hopping, with most of the 13 tunes disappointingly derivative.
He makes like Bruno Mars on Ain’t Messin’ ’Round, The Black Keys on Bright Lights and Chuck Berry on Travis County. This is 68 minutes of chameleon rock with good guitar.
On the album’s first verse Clark sings, Ain’t nobody else like me around. Alas, he’s wrong: We’ve heard this all before.