Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10
There are times in the world when the mind starts to think just a little too much, that when all is said and done, the answers and the questions should be seen for what they truly are, just the musings of a child like race who doesn’t really get the point of life. They have every concept of genetically inherited flight or fight but they have no grasp of the ambition of the idea of Ride Or Die.
The spark of electricity, the glow of red hot embers that sit and sizzle in the burning wicker man, the semblance of life that we have all attained with fortune, it is all cinders, all eventually cold grey ash if we are not able to listen to the grandeur of expression and the realm of the guitar playing out its passionate mating call to all who dare take note. In the tremendous Devon Allman, not only are the embers and the wicker man, that hollow institution that alludes to humanity at its most depraved and unthinking, allowed to hear the music, they are encouraged to dare themselves to ride the express train on offer, rather than lay down and becoming yet another fatal statistic burning itself out.
It is the ride that makes this third solo Devon Allman album so enlightening and tactile a proposition, a real joy to behold. The ride of a dozen tracks that make up Ride Or Die bounce and explode, they blaze with such brightness that even the songs that are of the pained variety, that suck the air out of the lungs as the listener empathises with the hurt and grief, all feel upbeat, like a firework that explodes over and over and again, the light is never ending.
In tracks such as Galaxies, Lost, the utterly brilliant Vancouver, Pleasure & Pain and Butterfly Girl, Devon Allman captures the spirit of flight or fight and offers no alternative but the one in which tender electricity can illuminate.
Ride Or Die is a fantastic album of sheer depth and creative passion, this is Devon Allman at his best and it is a journey in which you must not turn down the opportunity to be carried upon.
Ian D. Hall