Something of a coup securing the signature of blues artist Little Victor who issues latest album ‘Deluxe Lo-Fi’. The title of this new release from Little Victor accurately sums up the overall feel of this long player with a definite ‘lo-fi’ approach to the song writing throughout, but not without a sense of lavishness thrown in as well, which can be identified from the lengthy list of well-known contributors ranging from Kim Wilson of The Fabulous Thunderbirds (Muddy Waters, Eric Clapton, Bonnie Raitt), Steve Lucky (Blues Persuaders, Johnny Copeland), Carl Sonny Leyland (Chuck Berry, James Cotton, Louisiana Red) to name but a few. With the album being dedicated to Little Victor’s hero and musical partner Iverson Minter (aka Louisana Red), there’s plenty of personal touches from the handwritten tracks listed on the back cover that, if perused closely, read like the ups and downs of any relationship to the homely recording/production of the actual songs with their vintage qualities giving off a scent of times passed by. It’s the lo-fi qualities that really appeal, and certainly set their hooks in early via the swamp blues doubleheader ‘My Mind’ and ‘Graveyard Boogie’. Equally impressive is the following ‘I Done Got Tired’ and ‘This Letter’, with both tracks sounding at the end of their tethers and emotionally broken with a raw primitive blues supplying the musical accompaniment. From such wonderful (yes wonderful!) trudging rhythms, Little Victor mixes things up by transforming the tempo via the lively yet still gritty ‘Slow Down Baby’ that features the aforementioned Steve Lucky and, later on, ‘What’s The Matter Now’ with Jo Buddy that is reminiscent of Little Richard. Considering ‘Deluxe Lo-Fi’ is Little Victor’s first album in eight years, and with the man himself claiming this to be his best album since ‘Back To The Black Bayou’, Little Victor has very reason to believe so as ‘Deluxe Lo-Fi’ is a creative and engaging body of work that sounds as if it was recorded in an abandoned basement, yet gives off a highly professional and top quality feel that never once suggests a “lost tapes and B-sides” compilation. Top marks indeed!