The Mystix: Live
Rhythm and Roots
“I like The Mystix best when they just get loose and there’s plenty of that on Rhythm And Roots.”
The Mystix are a band of veteran(ish) roots-rockers who play Americana the old-fashioned way. This live album mixes their originals—written mostly by lead singer Joe Lily—with a wide cross-section of covers, from Bob Dylan to John lee Hooker.
Many of the band, like guitarist Bobby Keyes, drummer Marty Richards and Lily himself, are veteran session musicians with long careers so you get the feeling that they are doing this because they enjoy it—they could be sitting in a nice, warm studio instead of schlepping around provincial halls. They do what they do well.
There’s a rolling swagger about their long cover of Steve Earle’s ‘You’re The Best Lover That I Ever Had that makes you want to lean on a bar and reach for a beer. You’d swear that there is a brass section somewhere but I imagine that sound is down to the harmonica and keyboards of Annie Raines who blows a fine train blues harp at the end of the song.
In contrasting style are ‘Jelly Roll,’ all fiddle and mandolin with bass and harp solos, the rocking ‘Boppin’ The Blues’ and Stephen Foster’s classic ‘Hard Times Come Again No More,’ a song that never gets old. I like The Mystix best when they just get loose and there’s plenty of that on Rhythm And Roots.