It would be impossible for Bernard Allison to step out of the shadows and burn as brightly as his father, Luther Allison, did during the last five years of his life. The elder guitarist/singer/songwriter was one of the most soul-wrenching performers to ever hit the blues circuit. Blues fans miss him madly and have high expectations of his son Bernard, who they voted Contemporary Blues Male Artist at this year's W.C. Handy Awards. On Across the Water, Allison the younger blends anthemic rock numbers such as the title cut and "I Just Came Back to Say Goodbye" in with the funky "The River's Rising," the barroom shuffle "Change Your Way of Living," and a syrupy sweet, Prince-like ballad, "Work It Out." Allison is obviously searching for a seat in the hall of popular music, and the mystery of which one he'll take makes this promising release intriguing.