You can’t keep a good man down, especially if he has got the blues in his soul, and he is fuelled by rock ‘n’ roll. Equally, you cannot doubt his musical credibility for this is the same Rick Shaffer that was part of The Reds® back in the day. “Stacked Deck” is his fourth solo album, by the way.
Rick Shaffer is no purveyor of easy listening songs dripping in strings and classical piano figures. No, he just plugs it all in and lets the music take him where it wants to go. In some ways, that is a bit of a m=limitation in that most every song runs at the same tempo but, as if to compensate, the raw energy of a man possessed shines brightly throughout. The right angled riffing of “Shake And Shudder,” for example, might sound more like a turbocharged demo than a finished song, but that won’t stop you playing that air guitar alongside Uncle Rick, and the haunted blues of “Pushing Me” will have you turning the invisible reverb knob to the max just to duplicate that lonesome groove.
So there you have it. Rick Shaffer continues to walk down his own path with “Stacked Deck” and you will walk beside him just in case he will let you be in his band.
Review by: Bluesbunny