Déjà Voodoo

Four years after the untimely death of founding member Allen Woody, Gov't Mule has completed a lengthy mourning period marked by several tribute albums—which included most of the top bass playe

Four years after the untimely death of founding member Allen Woody, Gov't Mule has completed a lengthy mourning period marked by several tribute albums—which included most of the top bass players of the last 35 years—and relentless touring, likewise featuring a large cast of guest players. Finally regrouping in the studio with longtime producer Michael Barbiero and now-permanent members Danny Louis on keyboards and Andy Hess on bass, Mule has produced its most compelling and sonically diverse album to date. On the opening track, the irresistibly funky "Bad Man," guitarist/vocalist Haynes seems to recall his fallen comrade but also resolve to begin anew. Haynes' vocal is heavily processed on the urgent rocker "Slackjaw Jezabel," ditto for the intro of "Perfect Shelter." Clearly, Mule's creativity in the studio is gathering the same momentum as its explosive live performances.—CW