RockSpot Reviews
April 17, 1998

Eric Clapton

Remember how you feel after a big Thanksgiving dinner - full, satisfied? I experienced an out-of-season Thanksgiving feast dinner called "Pilgrim" in late March.

What more can possibly be said about one of the greatest guitarists and musical performers of our time, Eric Clapton. I have to admit to being somewhat intimidated to doing proper justice by him in this review. Heís been on a roll since "Disreali Gears" and "Wheels of Fire" back in the late sixties and is still going strong 30 years later.

Some subtle differences between then and now. They could best be described by comparing a trip by train at 90 miles an hour or by bicycle at 10. You see lots more scenery on the bike and might even become a part of it. Thus it is with "Pilgrim" - slower music but it has a depth and richness to it that left me feeling satisfied and taken in.

Strong points include the female vocal back-ups, the guitar work (like I have to mention it?) and overall studio production. The vocals donít overpower the instruments or visa versa - the percussion is just right. And Ericís voice its still going strong. Finally, if you like a lot of "bottom end," youíll think youíre in heaven.

And whatís with the album title? Donít know where Eric was coming from on this, but Webster defines a pilgrim as "a traveler to a holy place." If the intent of music is to touch the listenerís soul (which some consider a holy place) then Ericís sojourn was successful, at least with this fan.

So, should you buy "Pilgrim"? Only if you are a Clapton fan who learned a long time ago that buying on of his albums "blind" is not a gamble. Like a popular commercial says: "Just do it." And if you are not a Clapton fan but like blues-rock and have been wanting to add a some new blood to your music collection, I offer you a "Buy" recommendation as well.

Before I listened to the tape I intended to give it to friend who loves Eric. But now that Iíve listened to it, Iím gonna keep it and listen to it again..and again. I bid you safe traveling to your nearest music store.

By Bob Johnson, Alamogordo, NM