Album Review: Adam Hood – Different Groove
The first time I crossed paths with Adam Hood’s music was a few months ago at the Gruene With Envy Awards. He was sharing an acoustic set with Brandon Rhyder and Wade Bowen. After watching him perform I noted:
“Adam Hood wasn’t as vocally gifted as the other two guys, but more than made up for it with his guitar, he really knows how to bend the strings to his advantage. He was entertaining, had enjoyable lyrics, and is well worth checking out again. He appeared to have more of a traditional/troubadour style (something I like) than most of the other artists.”
Shortly after that performance I began to hunt down some of his music. I listened to his 6th Street EP and being a big fan of acoustic albums I was enamored with his sound. Fast forward a couple of months to SXSW. I caught another short acoustic set by Hood at Waterloo Ice House after which I commented “I’m becoming more and more impressed with his performances and talent each time I hear him.” I recalled him mentioning an upcoming album release, but didn’t think anymore of it until I received an email from Little Dog Records informing me of the street date.
Different Groove sees Hood’s progression from mainly acoustics to a full band sound. The first single, and opening track to the album “22 Days Too Long” is an upbeat, country-rocker laced with guitar solos and twangy Alabama vocals about Hood missing his daughter even before he hit the road. It’s the first of a few songs that are autobiographical in nature. He then eases into a slower, more soulful number with “Shelly.” Backed by the organ, Hood puts his vocals on full display. The biggest joy in each of these songs is the pictures that Hood so eloquently paints through his songwriting.
The romanticism of a traveling musician/troubadour is downplayed in Hood’s “Cars, Trucks, and Me.” People marvel at all the places he has been, commenting on how cool it must be, but he himself has “know way of knowing / blowing into town and back out again.” To the traveler all the “interstates look the same / from California to Tennessee.” The sound possesses another soulful appeal to it that reminds the listener that the life of a musician isn’t always as grand as people make it out to be. There’s still a lot of hard work and boring, repetitive chores that have to be done behind the scenes of what the public eye sees.
I don’t really understand a whole lot of what’s going on lyrically with “Buzzes Like Neon,” but that doesn’t keep the song from being enjoyable with the addictive beat and attention-grabbing chorus – “it buzzes like neon / and it makes me feel fine / and the way she leads me on / it’s a real good sign” – it dares you not to sing along.
On “Different Groove” Hood finds himself sitting on the front porch wasting his day, playing the same chords over and over in search of what he calls a different groove, a “style that makes me smile.” As all the previous songs on the album reflect, Adam has found his different groove and with the help of Pete Anderson he has masterfully translated his live acoustic sets to a wonderfully produced album backed by a full band. The majority of the songs appear to be reflective of the tour life that Adam Hood is living, from missing his daughter on the opening “22 Days Too Long,” to the reminiscing of that first show on “Never Comes Easy” and self-admission of the monotonous road on “Cars, Trucks, and Me.” There’s not a single song that I would skip.
Believe the hype, Adam Hood is a euphoric high for those suffering from a musically saturated landscape of Tweedledees and Tweedledums.
- luckyoldsun: If they're only allowed one modern inductee per year in the H-o-F, then there's a backlog developing. You have Skaggs, …
- Leeann Ward: I'm not an ETC fan, but I do love "Brotherly Love" with Keith Whitley.
- luckyoldsun: It's got to be "What I'd Say." (I think that's the title.) There was some question, I believe, over whether …
- Paul W Dennis: probably "Nobody Falls Like A Fool" or "Silent Treatment"
- Lynchie from Aberdeen: Where in heck's name is "That Was A Close One"?!?!? It's the guy's best song. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VrR_2rXiKA0
- Cody: Love seeing ETC getting some credit! My five, in no particular order at first; Crowd Around the Corner Home So Fine I Have …
- Juli Thanki: I think it's technically a Keith Whitley song, but I've always been fond of his duet with ETC, "Brotherly Love."
- luckyoldsun: Lots of very good artists have not had anywhere near the radio play and hits that Lee Ann Womack has …
- Hard Times: Just read Jewly Hight's feature on Womack. I couldn't believe Womack has had only a half dozen or so Top …
- Barry Mazor: Leeann, Im not surprised about your sister's response--or that, for many, Garth Brooks now equals the ancient days of country …