2009's The Ballad of John Henry is bluesman Joe Bonamassa's seventh proper studio album, and the follow-up to 2007's acclaimed Sloe Gin. As on previous outings, The Ballad of John Henry sees the gifted singer/guitarist deliver a dynamite blast of blues-influenced rock, buoying the genre's acoustic tendencies with searing electric guitar riffs and gritty vocals. Seven of the 12 tracks here were written by Bonamassa, ranging from the blistering title track - a story of the eternal American folk legend - to the swaying, loping, tough-nosed "Last Kiss." The songs are all suitably impressive, as are most of the covers, which include a Stevie Ray-esque take on Sam Brown's ballad "Stop!" and great renditions of Tom Waits' "Jockey Full Of Bourbon" and Ike & Tina Turner's "Funkier Than A Mosquito's Tweeter." The Ballad of John Henry further underlined Bonamassa's talents as both firebrand musician and compelling songwriter.