A Heady Mix of Cow-Punk, Insurgent Country and Hot Southern Blues Rock.
As a pre-cursor to this release I was sent a video a couple of months ago which blew my cotton socks right off! I’d never heard of Arkansas Dave prior to seeing and hearing his version of Tom Waits’s Chocolate Jesus……and after only watching it once I knew I ‘needed’ to hear and own a full CD in the same vein.
YOWZA! Dave holds nothing back for later as opening track virtually explodes from the speakers with a full on assault on the senses with a magnificent horn section plus a guitarist who thinks he’s in AC/DC and an industrial strength bass n drums that pound out a beat on a song that had me singing along to the chorus as I punched the air in joy.
Things do slow down for the powder keg love song On My Way which follows and I found myself struggling to find a comparable all out Rocking Alt. Country band on the circuit or indeed ever. Georgia Satellites? Waco Brothers? Even the Stones? But none of them have a horn section like this one……Hell… they could be from the Blues Brothers!
The mood on the album seamlessly swings between the hot and sultry Something For Me and The Wheel and the low down and dirty Squeaky Clean which features some scintillating bottle neck guitar by the way, with ease.
The songwriting and storytelling here is all rather good too; but it’s Arkansas Dave’s voice is what you will buy this album for…….gutsy, clear and very distinctive.
Covering all aspects of Blue Collar Americana Dave’s class oozes on the more Bluesy tracks Hard Times and the gorgeous Rest Of My Days which not only tug at your heartstrings but punch you in the gut when you listen intently to his words.
I’d love to give Chocolate Jesus the accolade of ‘Favourite Track’ and probably should, as it’s a doozy; but being the contrary soul I am I’m going for something slightly less left of centre for once; Think Too Much is the type of Insurgent and indeed Cow-Punk Country I’ve loved for nigh on thirty years and this song is right up there with my all time favourites from Jason and the Scorchers, the Waco Brothers, The Blasters and even Steve Earle circa Copperhead Road. Yep, brave words indeed……but well merited.
Readers will know by now; I’m very rarely wrong with such matters and yet again I’m right, this is an album you too NEED TO OWN!
Released April 20th 2018