Billy Price and Otis Clay
This Time for Real
Shivering in my air-conditioned office on a gloomy, rainy July day, I wondered, "What can I listen to that will make me feel warmer?" Turns out, This Time for Real is what I needed. A collaborative effort between longtime friends, celebrated locally based blues singer Billy Price and gospel luminary (and Blues Hall of Famer) Otis Clay, this record — which came out in May — has a timeless Southern soul sound. From the shining horns that open "Somebody's Changing My Sweet Baby's Mind" to the gently swinging harmonies of "Don't Leave Me Starving for Your Love," this is full of nice musical details. Think of it as a better mood waiting to happen.
BILLY PRICE plays the PITTSBURGH BLUES FESTIVAL 8 p.m. Fri., July 24. 200 Hartwood Acres, Allison Park. www.pghblues.com
— Margaret Welsh
Tommy Magik and The Wonderfulls
If you look at the bio for Tommy Magik and The Wonderfulls, you might think the outfit should go by "Rage For the Machine." It talks about standing with robots to "overthrow the oppressive powers that enslave their robo-brethren," and dreaming that "one day, man and machine may rock together." Rhetoric like this might point to a dizzying space-rock band, but TWATW III works as a straightforward ode to classic hard rock and heavy metal. The songs are catchy as hell, with some rip-roaring guitar work, but the sound could use a few more left turns to match song titles like "Glass Heart, Stars, Moons, and Clovers (and Red Balloons!) in the Midst of Eternity."
— Shawn Cooke