JJ Grey and Mofro CD reviewed by Michael Coleman

Music Reviews
JJ Grey and Mofro CD reviewed by Michael Coleman
Dec 12, 2007, 03:03

JJ Grey & Mofro - Country Ghetto


The sticky funk of Florida swampland is all over JJ. Grey and Mofro's latest, Country Ghetto. A skilled multi-instrumentalist with a rumbling baritone that oozes soulful sincerity, Grey is quickly making a name for himself and his self-declared “front porch soul” at rock festivals around the country. Like the Alabama-bred Drive-by Truckers, Grey seems intent on shattering stereotypes of the South. On the title track of Country Ghetto, he confronts those who think he's dumb because he wears overalls and lives in the woods. “I see the look in your eyes, you think I'm simple and plain…I know I'll never be more than just your dumb white trash.” But Grey goes on to make it clear he'd rather “starve to death than live by a government handout.” That kind of conviction is all over Grey's music, whether he's sending a raucous shout-out to “Mississippi” or defending his beloved swamps from encroaching Wal-Marts, Grey's music always feels authentic. “Glory, Glory hallelujah, the sun is shining down, I'm alive and I'm feeling fine,” Grey exults on the second to last track of this stellar, soulful rock record. He's sounding pretty fine, too. [Alligator]

-Michael Coleman

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