Mike Zito – First Class Life (2018) [FLAC 24bit/44,1kHz]

Mike Zito – First Class Life (2018)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz  | Time – 44:49 minutes | 521 MB | Genre: Blues
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Ruf Records GmbH

Blues-rock is a tightrope and Mike Zito has never lost his footing. At times in his storied two-decade career, the Texas bandleader has rolled up the amps and rocked as hard as anyone. Yet his lifelong fascination with the blues has always reeled him back in. And now, having shaken the rafters with 2016s acclaimed Make Blues Not War, First Class Life finds Mike diving deep into the only genre that can do justice to his hard-won true stories of hardship and redemption. Make Blues was pretty extreme and rocking, he reflects. This time, I was definitely thinking more blues. Released in 2018 on Ruf Records, First Class Life is a fitting album title from a man who remembers the hard times. The title track is a nod to where Ive come from and where Im at, explains the songwriter whose promising early career was almost destroyed by addiction. Its a rags-to-riches story, and its certainly true. I grew up poor in St. Louis, and now I’m travelling the world to sing my songs. In the world of excess America, I may not look rich, but in my world, I most certainly am. I have a beautiful family, Im clean and sober, and I get to play music. And what music. Since Mikes debut album, Blue Room (1997), there have been countless creative peaks, from 2011s confessional Greyhound, through his world-conquering contributions to US supergroup the Royal Southern Brotherhood, right up to recent solo triumphs like Gone To Texas (2013), Keep Coming Back (2015) and Make Blues Not War (2016). Last November, as the band tracked live at Mikes new backyard recording facility dubbed Marz Studios there was an unspoken mission to raise the bar. We planned three days for the session, he reflects, but had all the tracks finished the first day. The band was really on fire and it just had this really fun vibe that we were in my backyard making a first class record. On his 14th album release, Mikes socially charged observations and candid soul-searching have never been sharper. Theres the punchy call-to-arms of Time For A Change and the exquisite one-note slow-blues, The World We Live In. The electrified blues bounce of Dying Day swears lifelong allegiance to his wife, while the sinister Old Black Graveyard growls with Hendrix-esque flourishes as it salutes the fallen. Thats about a forgotten cemetery of poor black Americans that has not been kept up near my home in Beaumont, Texas, he says. Blind Willie Johnson is buried there. Its a sure sign of racism in America and how the poor arent treated with dignity. That song is a ghost story that those buried there wreak havoc in the night. Yet the records darker moments are offset by cuts like Mama Don’t Like No Wah Wah, the crash-bang-wallop gem written with Bernard Allison. Bernard told me about his first gig as guitarist for Koko Taylor, laughs Mike. Koko didnt like any effects on the guitar, she wanted it to sound natural. She also didn’t know what effects were, she just called them wah wah. So when Bernard made an attempt to use an effect on his guitar after playing with her for months, he got caught. Mama don’t like no wah wah is what he was told. Thats a song to me! Of course, the most captivating story of all is the dazzling upward curve of Mike Zitos unfolding career. In 2018, First Class Life doesnt just capture the past glories and setbacks it points a signpost at the peaks to come. With this album, he concludes, I had this idea of stepping up. I want the world to know I can play this music with conviction and style. I think its really the next step…”

Tracklist:
1. Mississippi Nights 04:20
2. First Class Life 04:04
3. I Wouldn’t Treat a Dog (The Way You Treat Me) 03:59
4. The World We Live In 04:20
5. Mama Don’t Like No Wah Wah 03:56
6. Old Black Graveyard 05:32
7. Dying Day 02:56
8. Back Problems 04:26
9. Time for a Change 03:13
10.Damn Shame 05:33
11. Trying to Make a Living 02:30

Download:

mqs.link_MikeZitFirstClassLife20182444.1.rar