Some Devils Play Solo
Some Devil is Dave Matthew’s first solo studio album. It is typical DM; with a slow blend of home-style acoustic, southern soul, and smooth jazz. The Dave Matthews Band itself does not appear on Some Devil, but rather Matthews is backed up occasionally by the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, et al. The change is pronounced as the music loses one sort of fullness and gains another.Without DMB’s chorus, saxophone, etc., Matthews’ vocals and guitar are more distinct than on past albums (with the exception of course for live solo performances). It is pure Dave, with a few accents of strings or soft back up vocals – but nothing overbearing. The main mode is slow bluesy contemplation, as in the songs “Trouble” and “Too High.” There are no fast songs, though a few are upbeat and a little spunky, such as “Dodo” and “So Damn Lucky.”
The title track displays Dave at his best, with just the man and his guitar. It maintains his classic balladeer style…but it is “Gravedigger” that captures that bittersweet mood he does so well: “Gravedigger, when you dig my grave / Could you make it shallow, so that I can feel the rain?” As a sure DM classic, this is a must-own for Matthews’ fans.