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Hayseed Dixie

A Hillbilly Tribute to Mountain Love – 2002 (Dualtone)

Reviewed by Robert Loy

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CDs by Hayseed Dixie

What does a one-joke novelty band do for an encore? Hayseed Dixie who made a name for themselves with bluegrass versions of AC/DC tunes find their thoughts turning to love.

If you've ever wondered what rock songs like J. Geils's "Centerfold" or Queen's "Fat Bottom Girls" sound like when given the fiddle and mandolin tribute, the answer is surprisingly enjoyable. On the best tracks you find yourself wondering if Steve Tyler knew he was writing a bluegrass song when he penned "Walk This Way" or why The Cars weren't astute enough to realize how badly "My Best Friend's Girl" needed a banjo.

In fact, only a couple of tunes don't work here. Whatever else the Hayseed original "I'm Keeping Your Poop" might be, it's not a love song. And it's hard to do a novelty cover of another novelty band's song as evidenced here by a leaden version of Spinal Tap's "Big Bottom." (Not to mention the fact that "Big Bottom" combined with the aforementioned "Fat Bottom Girls" and the poop song gives the album a curious ass-frontward tone.) But these are minor quibbles. Hayseed Dixie deserves credit for creating a whole new musical genre. Bluegrock? Rock and Grass? Stay tuned.