November ’08 Album Review Wrap-Up
Trace Adkins – X (Ten)
Whereas Adkins’ previous albums have touched on redemption and reflection in passing, X puts those issues front and center. In fact, a majority of the album is comprised of truly outstanding material, which includes the sincere “All I Ask For Anymore,” and the fantastic Larry Cordle (of “Murder on Music Row” fame) co-written stone country ballad “Sometimes a Man Takes a Drink.” […] With X, Adkins soars above our expectations and shatters our notions of what he’s capable of. X is a wonderful country record. — Jim Malec
Other Albums Released In November
Beth Stevens – Strong Enough
Music That Matters: “Strong Enough…takes the traditional bluegrass of [Steven’s] youth in the Stevens Family band and marries it to the more contemporary acoustic country/bluegrass of the album she did with her sister.”
The Boxmasters – Christmas Cheer
All Music Guide: “Clocking in at just under 33 minutes, this is a mercifully short set. Along with standards such as “Silver Bells” (where Thornton does his best Buck Owens and doesn’t hold a candle to the master)…[there] are some novel inclusions such as a cover of John Prine’s “Christmas in Prison,” which is done in Bakersfield style but fails to match the humorous irony of the original. There’s also a closing honky tonk read of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s “Happy X-Mas (War Is Over),” where Thornton sounds like a cross between Bob Dylan with a cold and his character in the film Bad Santa.”
The Churchmen – I’ll Be Long Gone
Country Standard Time: “…Their message is clearly the gospel delivered in a bluegrass format –the songs are of hope, inspiration and faith.”
Ian Tyson – Yellowhead to Yellowstone and Other Love Stories
Toranto Star: “…This is Tyson, apparently unrestrained by age–he turned 75 in September–and the astonishing effects of irreparable vocal cord damage caused a year ago. The voice may be unrecognizable–it seems higher, more conversational in tone, though as pitch-true as ever–but it’s well suited to these folk-derived melodies and lusty tales of rough riding and heartache.”
Ryan Adams – Cardinology
Slant: “Smooth and mostly sunny, Cardinology hums along on the fumes of better Ryan Adams material, infrequently surprising us with something glittering in its own tepid milieu”
Western Fifth – Stand Like a Thief
HowWasTheShow: “Open up the liner notes and view the album artwork by Jeremiah Talamantes and you see a lonely gray house on a dark prairie. A despondent gentlemen stands in the foreground in a top hat looking down at the ground. The cover art couldn’t be a better match for the music inside.”
- Leeann Ward: Thanks, NM. I like a good pop hook, to be honest. So, maybe I need to try it again.
- Barry Mazor: OK, Jim Z. That changes everything. I surrender.
- Jim Z: to call the Dirty River Boys an "Austin area band" is still incorrect. They are based in El Paso.
- nm: Leeann, you and I often have similar tastes in more-traditional country. And, to my ears, Sam Hunt's voice and lyrics …
- Barry Mazor: Matter of fact, as always--I did. The notes say the album was recorded & mixed by and at "The …
- Roger: Looking forward to picking up the Jamey Johnson Christmas EP - love all of those songs and can't wait for …
- Jim Z: that record was recorded in El Paso. (you could look it up) and other than appearing in Austin once in …
- Leeann Ward: Yes, I can always use more dobro in my life! Thanks for the Phil Leadbetter tip! I haven't been able to …
- Barry Mazor: OK, Jim. The record's more or less out of Austin. But I'm sure they're also good in El Paso...
- Jim Z: Dirty River Boys are from El Paso, Texas.