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The Black Crowes 

Wednesday, Dec 2 2009
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The Black Crowes' recent release, Before the Frost ... Until the Freeze doesn't stray far from the band's foundation. Fortunately, it also finds the Crowes delving a bit deeper into those roots. Here, they swagger through classic blues-rock, choogle through Southern boogie, and rip through several albums' worth of down-and-dirty riffage. They've also found the balance between losing themselves to jam-band excursions and coming back into the tight arrangements provided for the songs. The bonus material comprising the Freeze half of the album is a beguiling collection of alternately shimmering and knee-slapping country and Americana tunes — it's the only surprise on tap, and a pleasant one.

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Nicholas Hall

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