To do what Jim Heath has done as long as he’s done it—to work within such a tight framework of classic American forms across four decades and still sound not only fresh but electrifying is nothing short of astounding.
It’s proof that, with the right artist, genre restrictions can create magic. Look at Hank Williams or Howlin’ Wolf. The Rev is of this tradition—having proudly taken up the torch of outmoded styles and revitalized them, traveling back through time, tearing them wet and wriggling from their wombs and dropping them on the doorstep of the unsuspecting now. His guitar playing is the drag race at the end of Rebel Without a Cause, and rhythm section Jimbo Wallace and Scott Churilla are a roaring vintage Boss 351 Mustang engine firing at full tilt. REV is one of Horton Heat’s finest sets, channeling the abandon, fun and rebellion of primal rock ‘n’ roll without a cloying or overly nostalgic moment.