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Clean Up The Blood

Atomic Road Kings

Big Tone 2019

Review by David Bowling


There are probably thousands of bands all vying for a piece of the blues pie. Each is trying to find that magic ingredient that sets them apart and hopefully leads to commercial success. Enter the Atomic Road Kings and their new album Clean Up The Blood.

Jon Atkinson is a competent vocalist and excellent guitarist, especially when he is in slide guitar mode but it is harpist Eric Von Herzen that makes the difference. His melodic excursions create a deep, rich, and dark sound.

The harmonica and guitar sound play off of each other and form the foundation of the band’s music. They do not have a light touch but rather attack their songs with intensity and energy.

Atkinson and Von Herzen wrote 11 of the 12 tracks and songs such as “In Arms Reach,” “My Way Back Home,” “Back Down South,” and the title track are all prime examples of what modern day blues should be like.

Rating: ***