I don’t know if I want this feature to stick, but I’ve been thinking of having some type of system that will allow me to revisit albums that I’ve covered throughout the month in order to reorganize my thoughts on them. It all started when I gave a re-listen to Marty Stuart’s last album, and all I could think was, “damn, I might have to revise my thoughts on this”. Why? It hit me a lot harder at that point in time than it originally did, and it hit me pretty damn hard then as well! That’s why I wanted to have a little monthly end cap for the (great) albums I’ve covered that I want to revisit. I don’t know what exactly I should cover as far as ground rules go, but all I’ll do is talk about the albums that I either once called great or feel are great now as well as give an update of my thoughts. I know it’s already getting into May, but what can I say? I just thought to do this a couple minutes ago. Get it? Got it? Good.
First up, The Mavericks’ Brand New Day (Original Grade: 8/10)
Yeah, this is a March release, but we did talk about in April. Anyway, I don’t know what else to say other than this was a lot of fun to hear. In all honesty I find myself revisiting certain tracks more than I do the full album, as certain songs such as “I Think Of You” and “For The Ages” just haven’t held up well. Still, there’s some great stuff here, and while I’d probably revise the grade to a strong 7, I still think this is a great listen.
Shinyribs – I Got Your Medicine (Original Grade: 8/10)
On the topic of fun, we got this album. I’ll admit, I don’t know another Shinyribs album or know anything about this band outside of this album. Heck, I wasn’t even crazy about this album the first time I heard it. It’s grown on me a lot though, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t humming some of these melodies at times. It’s a little outside of the realm of what we traditionally cover, but who cares right? Great music is great music, and while I can’t decide whether this album fits that criteria for you, I know it does for me. I’d still keep this at a light to decent 8.
Brad Paisley – Love and War (No grade given at the time)
While I would agree with those saying this is good and not great, I would probably personally lean more towards the “really good” side rather than the “kind of good” side. I’ll admit, “Devil” is still a track I always skip, as is “Contact High”, but I still like a lot of these songs, and I think it’s a good return to form for Brad overall. I’d say a decent 7 for this now that I’ve sat with it awhile longer.
Jason Eady – s/t (Original Grade: 8/10)
This is an album that has really an album that just grows on you with each listen. I get it, we’re getting into warmer weather months, and you all want to hear fun stuff. I like fun stuff as well, but I also appreciate music like this at any time of year, maybe even especially now. It’s an incredibly tight, cohesive listen full of some absolutely killer tracks. It’s still not a 9 for me due to it lacking some tempo variety, but it’s a strong 8 still.
Charlie Worsham – The Beginning Of Things (Original Grade: 8/10)
This is quickly becoming one of my most listened to albums in 2017, and if anything I still only like it more with each and every listen. I get that it’s not for everyone, but it’s most certainly for me. I hate to leave it as cliched as that, but it’s all I got….it’s damn good. Birthday Suit still sucks though. The album is still a decent to strong 8 for me.
Angaleena Presley – Wrangled (Original Grade: 7/10)
So yeah, while I didn’t love anything outside of “Country” and the title track, I still think this is a nice listen throughout that will probably connect better with a different audience. I haven’t had the chance to revisit this yet, but yeah…it’s good. Still a 7 I guess.
OVERALL ASSESSMENT FOR APRIL:
Eh, I can’t complain when it’s all said and done. I didn’t get anything that blew my mind, but I find a couple of great albums in Charlie Worsham and Jason Eady (and probably Shinyribs) that I feel will connect with me until the end of the year (and beyond). With acts like Zac Brown Band, Colter Wall, Chris Stapleton, Tony Jackson, and Bobby Bare set to release new projects this month, maybe we’ll finally get another top notch project to join the ranks of Sunny Sweeney, Rhiannon Giddens, and Marty Stuart. I can hope, right?