"Ultimately, the power and impact of SPEAK NO EVIL is in its ability to invoke the best of the Fillmore era without aping it. While clearly reminiscent of classic era power rock like Cream, Traffic and Hendrix, SPEAK NO EVIL stands with those seminal sounds as an equal rather than a retread. Any one of the songs on SPEAK NO EVIL could have been released in 1968, and our kids would be playing them today on Guitar Hero. Its weight and substance as an artistic whole speak to Ellis' deep understanding for the same roots music that was so important to the 60s rock pioneers who opened the doors to a world of music most Americans did not know existed. Night after night, Tinsley Ellis is traveling the world reminding audiences why they fell in love with the blues, one blistering rocking song at a time."
“In the last five years, no one has released more consistently excellent blues albums than Atlanta's Tinsley Ellis, and his latest project [MOMENT OF TRUTH] once again validates his status. Ellis produced the disc, penned nine of the 11 tunes, sings like a man possessed and wields a mean lead guitar from start to finish. His sidemen are in the pocket, his original material is solid, and Ellis' performance shows sublime confidence and grit: Check his guitar work on the midtempo "Freeway Soul." In a more ferocious vein, both "Somebody" and his cover of "I Take What I Want" find Ellis and guitar in suborbital mode.”
“Blues rocker Tinsley Ellis knows where his bread is buttered and bakes up a loaf of it on his first album of original material since 2004's THE HARD WAY. Best known for fiery shows as evidenced by 2006's terrific LIVE! HIGHWAYMAN, Ellis' explosive combination of R&B, blues and rock clicks on this rugged set [MOMENT OF TRUTH]. He roars through the riff-driven "Somebody" and the double entendres of "Bringin' Home the Bacon" like the pro he is, whipping off muscular solos that never overstay their welcome. "Get to the Bottom" and "Too Much of Everything" tackle the unfortunate results of living life in the fast lane, something he likely knows plenty about after spending a few decades on tour. Ellis works in a Stones styled mid-tempo rocker on "Tell the Truth" (not the Derek & the Dominos song), a tightly written gem aided immensely by fellow Atlanta musician Michelle Malone on backing vocals. The guitarist obviously loves his wah-wah pedal, which brings a Cream-like psychedelic swamp edge to tracks such as "Too Much of Everything." The slow, sensual groove of "Freeway Soul" is yet another song about a broken relationship and being on the road, topics Ellis seems to understand first hand. Unlike many in his genre, these sturdy songs are more than just frameworks to hang his solos on. A rollicking version of Sam & Dave's "I Take What I Want," one of only two non-originals on the album, makes the soul connection even more palpable. The guitar work is typically terrific throughout as Ellis' tone shifts from fluid to frenzied depending on the track. The closing solo acoustic "Stare at the Sun" is the only unplugged performance and a tidy coda for another in a series of successful albums from this earthy and dedicated, roots rocking blues journeyman.”
"You can't read about Tinsley Ellis' monstrous guitar chops without encountering words like "feral," "incendiary," and "fiery." But, as demonstrated on this release [LIVE! HIGHWAYMAN] - the guitarist's first for the label since 1997 - those adjectives are more than appropriate, especially when he takes the stage.... HOT LICK: Ellis' guitar threatens to combust on "The Axe."
"Blues-rockin' Tinsley Ellis burns up the stage on LIVE-HIGHWAYMAN (Alligator.) Private note to Clive Davis - cop this whole set for Bo Bice to belt!
"Tinsley Ellis' move to Telarc for his 2002 CD "Hell or High Water" apparently inspired him. Like that disc, "The Hard Way" is a blues/rock tour de force. ... Ellis is not only still in the game, he's very much on top of it...Whether delivering the blues, laying down the funk or working up an R&B sweat, Ellis cuts loose and stays on top."
"What sets Hard Way and its 2002 predecessor apart from other blues records on the market is Ellis' restless approach to his craft. He is not content to rest on his laurels, or to merely stick knee-deep in the glorious mud of a blues style he created. He relentlessly tries to extend its scope and range. On Hard Way, he succeeds in spades and raises his own high-water mark...It is an essential purchase for Ellis' many fans, but is even more so for those seeking the very best in modern blues."
"Strong singing and explosive, disciplined solos distinguish the latest release [THE HARD WAY] from blues guitarist/vocalist Tinsley Ellis."
"Feral blues guitar...non-stop gigging has sharpened his six-string to a razor's edge...his eloquence dazzles...he achieves pyrotechnics that rival early Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton."
"Ellis' new album [HELL OR HIGH WATER] shows off his considerable skills at the meeting ground of hot Southern blues/rock and red clay soul."
"Tinsley Ellis is already one of the leading lights in the blues/rock genre."
"His latest release [HELL OR HIGH WATER] bears witness to the maturity and all-around talent of this blues/rock master. Ellis' playing is all about feel and coloration."
"Albert Collins is gone, but this new batch of music shows that there are others equipped to follow in his footsteps."
"Ellis makes a clear and passionate statement about his roots in blues and rock."
"HELL OR HIGH WATER is chock full of poignant fills, bends and solos. Ellis' debut for Telarc may be the best album he's made."
"Throughout HELL OR HIGH WATER Ellis finds solid footing on the soul/blues tightrope. Ellis' vocals are expressive and often stirring."
"Make no mistake-he can wail when it suits him. But on KINGPIN Ellis favors a restrained, ultra-tasty axe in the service of a sustained groove...what's happening is Ellis' best album to date."
"[On KINGPIN] his vocals taking on a Boz Skaggs like quality, guitar flirting with Clapton/Santana overtones, more passionate than Clapton could ever conjure up, more blue than Carlos."
"The jump to a major label from an independent can be a gamble, but fans need not fear that the fiery string-bender has sold his soul: KINGPIN chronicles a natural progression for a journeyman who came up first as an apprentice."
"KINGPIN...may be his purest blues to date...onstage he may rip it up like a cross between Albert Collins and Lonnie Mack, but here he's mellowing down easy...a late-night lonesome drive, full of secrets..."
"On his fifth Alligator Album [FIRE IT UP], Ellis again cranks the volume and rattles your brain with his rocking blues Blitzkrieg...his aggressive guitar playing, though, has a carefully controlled expressivity...packing unbelievable emotion."
"Raw and righteous, funky and strong."
"Powerful Southern-flavored blues-rock...fiery guitar attack...vocals infused with a menacing weight...Ellis sizzles on up-tempo numbers..."
"It's hard to overstate the raw power of his music."
"Ellis unleashes a torrent of dazzling musicianship pitched somewhere between the exhilarating volatility of rock and roll and the melancholic passion of urban blues."
"The quality of his tuneful, mournful tones can be piercing, threatening and enlightening..."