“Steve Gilbert is well known as an excellent composer and lyricist. Now he has locked himself again in a recording studio to give us this magnificent enlightening album that becomes pure dynamite as it is full of raw energetic blues. On the other hand, the song lyrics will not leave anyone indifferent, you may like or dislike them but I am sure you will catch their meaning and purpose. Only as an example here is the first phrase of the song that gives title to the album: "I’m a rolling-down the Hempstead Highway, it’s the only thing I want to do, if I keep on a rolling I just might forget about you” or as he says in another one: "I wish I had a shotgun I’d blow you straight to hell” or one more that says: "If the problems were money, God! I swear I’d be a millionaire". With lyrics like these and music where blues and Americans combine in equal parts, the result cannot be other than dusty dirty road blues. VERY GOOD.”
“Veteran singer/songwriter/guitarist Gilbert has been playing roots music (blues and alt country) since the 70’s. Now back in his home state (Texas), he is focusing on his love of the blues. This disc includes eight original compositions and five classics such like Muddy’s “Streamline Woman” and Willie Dixon’s “Bring It On Home To Me”. Gilbert is supported by Jeffrey Hamby (bass), Carl Owens (drums) and guests William Hollis (Hammond organ on three songs), Eugene “Sparetime” Murray (vocals on “Shake That Thang” and backing on one other song), Kevin Fitzpatrick (acoustic guitar), and a hand-clapping chorus on two songs. The sound is straight forward electric blues.”
“Opening with title track, "Hempstead Highway", Steve Gilbert shows his rock n roll roots with basic rockabilly style guitar riffs, joined by Jeffrey Hamby on bass and Carl Owens on drums.”
"Mr. Joe Guitar Hughes" gets down in the blues with solid Hammond work from William Hollis. I particularly like Gilbert's guitar work on this track with pace and style.
"Straight To Hell" has a rocking country feel and some strong lyrics. With rowdy guitar riffs and tight rhythm, this is one of my favorite original tracks on the release.
"Shake That Thang" has a cool Booker T feel with Hollis jamming out on organ and slick guitar soloing over the basic rhythm. Very cool!
“I love the lyrics that Gilbert strung together for Big Big Mouth. One of those tales that you'd associate with someone like Rick Estrin. "You got a big, big mouth/and all your brains is down south" says a mouthful, ya think?”