So, It's Like That

The fact that blues-rock guitarist Joe Bonamassa is hitting the road this month with B.B.

The fact that blues-rock guitarist Joe Bonamassa is hitting the road this month with B.B. King is a testament to this guy's old-school, old-soul virtuosity. There's so much passion and sweat slung about his sophomore outing, So, It's Like That, that just listening to it feels like an interactive outing. The 25-year-old plays a grimacing lead guitar and delivers gruff vocals at full volume, and he's not afraid to get down and dirty on such Southern rock paeans as "Lie #1" and "Sick in Love." But Bonamassa also shows an appreciation for the nuances of emotion in the hitworthy "My Mistake" and first single "Unbroken," both melodic triumphs that tough guys can sing along with. Just in case his authenticity still isn't stamped in capital letters, the first 25,000 copies of the album contain a bonus DVD with two hours of live footage. Together, it's enough to send smoke signals from your home stereo: This is no regular Joe.—CT