An Album That Got Away – Caroline Reese and the Drifting Fifth’s ‘Tenderfoot’

Author: Leon Blair

Wait what? An album that got away? Where’s the review? – Well, here’s the thing. Have you ever visited a country music blog only to find out an album you like hasn’t been reviewed and probably won’t be either? Moreover, have you ever heard a blogger say they didn’t review it because they “couldn’t find the words” to say about a particular project? Well, that’s essentially what this feature will be – a dedication to the albums we don’t enough to say for a full review but still want to highlight regardless. 

Ah alright, so this means you could probably cover everything that comes out then and take the easy way out, right? – No, absolutely not. This feature will only highlight the albums that I’ve given a lot of listens to and just couldn’t muster up the words for a full review. I’m not going to give everything one listen and give my short thoughts just to cover more music. That’s cheating. 

So that probably means that despite getting featured here, these types of albums probably won’t be eligible for year end lists as well as the songs on them are concerned? – Only if I do a proper song review for that particular song, which will come down to having the time to do it. Otherwise, no. 

Alright, I see then. So what’s with this project? – It’s the debut album by Caroline Reese and the Drifting Fifth that came out on January 6th who has opened for the likes of Chris Stapleton, Brandi Carlile, Corb Lund, and Ray Wylie Hubbard. Vocally, she sounds a lot like a mix of Karen Jonas and Lydia Loveless with more of a rasp to her voice. The album itself is a nice blend of country, pop, and rock. It’s an interesting album from a sonic standpoint, and yet some of the lyrics are admittedly hard to make out and seem almost personal to Caroline and/or her band, one of the reasons I had trouble saying much about it. I still like it, and would probably give it a very light 7 out of 10. 

Well now that that’s established, I have to ask, why review something like this when you could review something else? –  Well here’s the thing, anything I review is solely my opinion, and just because I can’t find the words for something doesn’t mean somebody else might not. Maybe they’ll choose to cover this project now and bring justice to the artist I couldn’t cover. 

Alright, so that’s essentially the entire premise to these types of posts. In the future I might only do the part about talking briefly about the project, so yeah, listen to the songs down below and check it out if you want!

11 thoughts on “An Album That Got Away – Caroline Reese and the Drifting Fifth’s ‘Tenderfoot’

  1. I keep finding album after album that I “missed,” including this one. Two I’ve been listening to some the last day or two are Chase Stapleton’s “When the Dust Clears” (2016) and Joey McGee’s “Terlingua Taproot” (2017).


    1. I saw this on another blog list as something that was coming out. Considering that all (I found) that was released last week was this and Dale and Ray, I figured I’d give this a shot. It’s definitely more Americana/Rock than anything else.
      I definitely misread Chase’s name for a second if you know what I mean haha. For a second I wondered how I could miss a Stapleton release but that’s admittedly a name I haven’t heard of.
      Joey and I follow each other on Twitter so I’m surprised he didn’t reach out to me about his new album. I didn’t even know he had one out. Thanks for passing the information along. I already have plans to cover Band Of Heathens, Infamous Stringdusters tomorrow so I can add him as well.


      1. I found Chase only because of my name. He’s new to me. I’m too distant to the better-known one to count, either, but… The highlight for me on his is “High Speed Chase.” The song that stands out to me on Joey McGee’s is “Honeybee.”


  2. Interesting feature Leon. Everyone has those kinds of albums that they have a difficult time putting words to but that doesn’t mean we should just ignore them. Cool idea!


  3. Great idea for a new review style. Let’s face it, sometimes you just don’t have a whole lot to say about some albums. I can easily see myself reviewing some albums in this manner.


    1. Thanks Megan!
      By the way, I don’t know if you saw, but for some reason I can’t get comments to go through on your blog. I don’t know if anyone else had this trouble but I just wanted you to know. Also, great review of the new duets album by Jason Eady and Courtney Patton.


  4. For the sake of accuracy, this is her 4th release either solo or with the Drifting Fifth.
    After about 10 spins over a few days, I decided this one was spotlight worthy. It’s eclectic and diverse without sounding disjointed.


    1. All of my sources listed different time periods. I saw that she had other projects but apparently they were solo and this was their debut as a band under this name so I went with that.
      Hey, that’s good to hear. I’ve given it 7 listens and I still can’t find the proper words for it, but I couldn’t just let it get away. I’m glad someone else will be doing it justice 🙂


      1. All good. My research indicates that after her 2nd solo album, the band was created and they had an EP out before this album. That’s why I say 4th, but whatever, the main point is in getting good music out to the people.
        I don’t know thtat I’m doing it justice, but you know me, if I decide to spotlight it, then I think it’s really good.


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