Billy Gibbons, legendary guitarist and lead singer of ZZ Top, recently announced his first solo tour. And to my surprise, he also announced his first solo album.
The album, “Perfectamundo,” is set to release in November. Before I found out more about the album, I expected a blues album. It made perfect sense to me. ZZ Top’s last few albums have consisted of mostly groovy rock songs, with occasional pop pieces, so of course he would be itching to do a blues record, as he should. He’s a great blues player!
When I read the description of the album, I realized I couldn’t be anymore wrong if I tried.
“Perfectamundo” is Gibbons’ collection of what he calls “Afro- Cuban” music. He assembled a group of musicians, which he dubbed The BFG’s.
Apparently Gibbons has always had this music in his soul. Before ZZ Top reached popularity, Gibbons was in a psychedelic band called The Moving Sidewalks. However, the roots of this album go back even further. Before The Moving Sidewalks, Gibbons studied Latin percussion.
Although the album has yet to be released, the first single, “Treat Her Right,” was made available online when the announcement was made.
It took me a couple of listens to really get the feel for what the song was. There’s no doubt about it—it’s different, but it’s not bad.
My biggest problem with the song is that there is ridiculously obvious autotune on his vocals. Is it necessary? No. I personally don’t see how it adds to the song.
The song itself has a really good groove to it, and it gives a better idea of where some of ZZ Top’s songs came from, especially stuff from the ’80s and ’90s.
Sure, it’s not the power trio formula ZZ Top is known for, but it’s still unmistakable Billy Gibbons. His guitar tone is there, and it’s still just as good as it ever was.
Usually, I can get an idea of whether or not an experimental project like this works, but in this case, I can honestly say it’s half and half. It works for what it is, but as far as the audience goes, some of you will like it, and some of you won’t.
What do I think about it? Well, I’ll have to give the whole album a couple of listens, but so far, I can dig it.