Ice On The Motorway – Wilko Johnson & Roger Daltrey

The most Iconic of Essex rockstars hooked up with the greatest front man in rock history for a victory lap record back when he thought he was dying. The album Roger and Wilko put out back in 2014 (why they didn’t call their band Roger/Wilko is beyond me) is one of those knockabout fun projects bands of a certain vintage can do towards the end of their career.

The record is essentially covers of songs that influenced them both given the Essex Pub Rock treatment, plus a there’s a do-over of some of Wilko’s biggest Dr. Feelgood moments with (Think about this sentence for a second) The lead singer of The Who doing Lee Brilleaux’s parts.

It might be slightly controversial to say that Daltrey sounds the best he’s ever sounded. His voice is just as strong as it was on Who’s Next or Tommy but it’s got a maturity to it that adds gravitas. He’s like an aged whiskey.  The material (all of it even the Dylan cover) benefits from RD’s pipes working their magic on those songs.

Ice On The Motorway is a good song in it’s original incarnation. With the modern recording of Wilko’s guitar work and Roger’s incredible voice bending the note and making the most of the inflections it’s a total masterpiece.

Going Back Home was supposed to be Wilko’s swansong. Due to some miracle he’s still with us. With Ice On The Motorway, (it turns out) you can go that way.

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