Archive for the ‘Album Reviews’ Category

Those Darlins – Those Darlins (self titled debut) Oh Wow Dang Records

Those Darlins – Those Darlins (self titled debut) Oh Wow Dang Records

Atlanta, GA –  Playing live since 2006, Those Darlins are all about big leather coats with fur collars (when it’s cold), hot pants (when it’s hot), cowboy boots, and making you get up and move! The self-titled debut release by the foursome from Murfreesboro, TN, is a full-tilt, no-holds-barred, never-look-back joyride. While their boots are […]

Album Review: James Hand–Shadow on the Ground

Album Review: James Hand–Shadow on the Ground

James Hand—Shadow on the Ground—Rounder–2009 James Hand is countrier than you. In fact, he was country before (and while and after) country was cool—the 57-year-old has been playing his point-blank honky-tonk in Texas roadhouses since he was in his teens, and now, four decades on, he is a beloved, Willie Nelson-endorsed local legend. For 35 of […]

Drivin’ N’ Cryin’ “The Great American Bubble Factory” Vintage Earth/Thirty Tigers

Drivin’ N’ Cryin’ “The Great American Bubble Factory” Vintage Earth/Thirty Tigers

From the title, it’s a little hard to know what to expect from Drivin’ N’ Cryin’s first album in 12 years, but opener “Detroit City,” makes it clear they still like to turn it up, with front man Kevn Kinney sounding a bit like Bon Scott. Paying tribute to Detroit, referencing local bands like MC5 […]

The Cave Singers: Welcome Joy (8/10/09)

The Cave Singers: Welcome Joy (8/10/09)

The Seattle Trio will release their sophomore album on August, 18th through their home label Matador Records. Following the band since they started touring in 2007, I have been pleased with the evolution of their sound and production. The resonance of Welcome Joy is natural and calming, making for an enjoyable experience for even the […]

Steve Shiffman & The Land of No

Steve Shiffman & The Land of No

Anti-folk has been used to describe this East coast wonder known as Steve Shiffman & The Land of No. Indeed the elements of modern anti-folk are present in this melodic record, however it can be more clearly stated by considering Steve Shiffman as a bridging sound from the singer/songwriter/folk movement that is taking over all […]

J.B. Beverley and the Wayward Drifters “Watch America Roll By” Helltrain

J.B. Beverley and the Wayward Drifters “Watch America Roll By” Helltrain

The fact that “Virginia’s hardcore honky tonkers” reference Johnny Cash and Hank Williams (and to a somewhat lesser degree Merle Haggard) on their myspace page doesn’t shock me because those names still have some level of cool factor in certain circles, but when they drop Jimmie Rodgers’ name, I know they’re serious about old country. […]

Larry Jon Wilson “Larry Jon Wilson” Drag City

Larry Jon Wilson “Larry Jon Wilson” Drag City

I’d never heard of Larry Jon Wilson before. I can’t comment on his four Monument releases from the second half of the 1970’s. They were a little before my time, and no one had ever pointed me in his direction. After hearing this new, self-titled release, I may have to track down those albums. Given […]

Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit "Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit" Lightning Rod Records

Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit "Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit" Lightning Rod Records

Considering it took about three years for Jason Isbell’s 2007 debut Sirens of the Ditch to come together, and that his songwriting contributions to Drive-By Truckers were sometimes few and far between, it is surely with a sigh of relief that fans receive his second output, Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit. While this time […]

Johnny Cash "Remixed" Compadre Records

Johnny Cash "Remixed" Compadre Records

By Melissa Barnes Produced by hip hop king Snoop Dogg and John Carter Cash, Remixed was either a hit or big fat miss depending on your musical tastes. If you tend to err on the side of the more traditional and old school Johnny Cash, this is probably not the album for you. However, if […]

The Boxmasters "Christmas Cheer" Vanguard

By Kyle McCraw Billy Bob Thornton and his new band have been busy this year, not only releasing a double disc debut, but also following with this Christmas album less six months later. And, even though a largely unheard of band releasing a Christmas album seems like a bad idea, there are some nice original […]

Neil Young "Sugar Mountain: Live at Canterbury House 1968" Reprise

Neil Young "Sugar Mountain: Live at Canterbury House 1968" Reprise

By Kyle McCraw For a little context, 1968 was the same year Neil Young left Buffalo Springfield and the year before the release of his first solo record. So, it should come as no shock that a little more than half of the songs here are from his Buffalo Springfield days (including “Mr. Soul,” and […]

Ryan Adams & The Cardinals "Cardinology" Lost Highway

Ryan Adams & The Cardinals "Cardinology" Lost Highway

By Jeremy Climer Beginning with the release of Easy Tiger, Ryan Adams seemed to have learned to control his desire to release damn near every song he writes and put out a solid, cohesive record, and Cardinology is a continuation of that maturity. Perhaps it is the consistency of playing with The Cardinals and having […]

Kevin Costner & Modern West "Untold Truths" Universal South

Kevin Costner & Modern West "Untold Truths" Universal South

By Kyle McCraw When I heard that Kevin Costner was releasing an album, I gotta admit, I was skeptical. It turns out Costner has been playing with Modern West member John Coinman since the late-80s. And that is exactly what this sounds like: a country rock album from the late-80s (For whatever reason, production-wise, the […]

Lee Ann Womack "Call Me Crazy" MCA Nashville

Lee Ann Womack "Call Me Crazy" MCA Nashville

By Miles Price There aren’t many people in modern country music that can project such a small-town-neighborly vibe that you’re able to feel as though you’ve met them. Their songs are not far-fetched rants of decadence and fame. There’s no mistaking that Lee Ann Womack has that incredibly genuine demeanor. Call Me Crazy, released less […]