G. Love

Lemonade | Brushfire/Universal
By MIKAEL WOOD  |  August 15, 2006
3.5 3.5 Stars
PERENNIAL: G. Love’s oddball fusion of blues licks and rap rhymes now sounds like organic chemistry.

When in 1994 G. Love emerged as a rapping white-boy Boston transplant from Philadelphia’s old-school blues scene, the temptation was to write him off as a one-shot, “Cold Beverage” curio — a left-field indulgence of the alt-rock era. Rather than fade away, though, he’s stuck around, piling up a consistent catalogue over the past decade and cultivating devoted fans in all kinds of corners, from underground hip-hop to jam-band roots rock, so that his oddball fusion of blues licks and rap rhymes now sounds like organic chemistry. What appeals about his seventh album isn’t the tang of novelty but the warmth of familiarity. Even the guest stars seem at home: Ben Harper slides easily into the mellow hand-drummed groove in “Let the Music Play,” and Jack Johnson (who issued Lemonade through his Brushfire imprint) loosens up his already-loose beach-bum delivery in “Rainbow,” a laid-back honky-tonk duet. It’s not hard to imagine G. Love making albums like this for years to come.

G. LOVE + 311 + DROPKICK MURPHYS + THE WAILERS + JURASSIC 5 + PEPPER | Tweeter Center, Mansfield | August 20 | 617.228.6000

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