With Painting Signs, Eric Bibb makes a fine case for blues as a music of introspection, warmth, and supreme nuance. Easily his most mature album to date, Painting Signs continues Bibb's formula of socially aware songs performed from an acutely personal point-of-view; standout tracks "Don't Ever Let Nobody Drag Your Spirit Down" and a cover of "Hope in a Hopeless World" hammer home his message of individual freedom and the responsibilities that accompany it. (It's no coincidence that Pops Staples, to whom Bibb dedicates this album, once recorded the latter song.) That's not to say Painting Signs is overly didactic or, indeed, "heavy" in any way; even the most serious songs here, like the plea for peace and unity "Got To Do Better," are leavened by a musical backdrop that's soulful and immediately accessible. Gospel-leaning backing vocals by Linda Tillery and her Cultural Heritage Choir help flesh out several cuts, and robust accordion fills by Bibb's longtime accompanist Janne Petersson add a subtle Louisiana flavor to the rolling, propulsive "Kokomo" and, to surprisingly good effect, the deep-grooved version of Jimmy Reed's "Honest I Do."
Obscure 90's Italian act apparently with a very short career. Pictures came from Torino and performed as a six-piece group with two guitarists, Lorenzo Ribola and Paolo Bonvicino, along with keyboardist Enrico Tumiati, drummer Roberto Pasquino, singer Livio Fazzalari and bassist Michele Maratea. Their first appearance comes on the 95' ''Molecole'' compilation of Kaliphonia label with the track ''Love Letters''. The group was lucky enough to have its sole album ''Painting the blue'' released on the major prog label Musea Records in 1997, after which Pictures' traces have been unfortunately lost.