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Lara Hope and the Ark-Tones
Here to Tell the Tale

Hudson Valley, N.Y. might not be the first place one would look to find an authentic rockabilly band, but devotees of this genre are likely already familiar with the quartet, Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones, who now deliver their third and most fully realized album yet. Rockabilly contains a hybrid of ...

Gary Louris
Jump for Joy

Gary Louris is, for many, the Jayhawks. Although the band's "XOXO" album from 2020 featured more contributions from his fellow bandmates than usual, it's always Louris' special singing that distinctly sets this band apart from the Americana pack. Maybe there just wasn't ...

Brett Young
Weekends Look a Little Different These Days

It's troubling after listening to an album multiple times in a row, to not have even one song stick in one's memory. However, this is an honest initial response to Brett Young's "Weekends Look A Little Different These Days." It's not so much that the music on Young's ...

Shannon McNally
The Waylon Sessions

Waylon Jennings albums were often brash, loud affairs, his (and others') electric runs magnified by Richie Albright's frequently booming drums, Duke Goff's pulsating bass notes and Ralph Mooney's whining steel, musicians executing creative and genre-expanding arrangements that ...

Travis Linville
I'm Still Here

"I'm Still Here" is singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Travis Linville's follow-up to 2017's "Up Ahead." Like that one, it's full of well-crafted songs. Although Linville can play any number of instruments ranging from guitars, lap steel, pedal steel, ...

Gary LeVox
One on One

Gary LeVox One On One Big Machine/Capitol Christian Music Group Although Gary LeVox never hid his Christian faith while a member of the popular Rascal Flatts trio, his five-song EP focuses pointedly on songs of belief. Of course, he sings wonderfully throughout. His voice was the most distinctive ...

The Steel Woods
All of Your Stones

"All of Your Stones" began as the third studio album for Southern outlaw rockers The Steel Woods, but resulted in a posthumous release for co-founder and co-songwriter, guitarist Jason "Rowdy" Cope, who contributes most of these songs. Cope passed way too early at the age of 42. ...

Kenny Chesney
Here and Now deluxe

After a storied run including eight Entertainer of the Year awards and two Greatest Hits albums (so far), Kenny Chesney was due for a setback. This one wasn't strictly personal, as the "Chillaxification" Tour got waylaid by a pandemic shutdown that scrapped most everything. ...

Miranda Lambert Jack Ingram Jon Randall
The Marfa Tapes

While Miranda Lambert is the biggest celebrity in a threesome that also includes Jack Ingram and Jon Randall, she's just one member of a songwriting power trio on "The Marfa Tapes." Each participant is a country songwriting superstar, even though many casual mainstream country fans may ...

Ronnie Milsap
A Better Word for Love

There was a time when Ronnie Milsap's soulful approach to making country music was controversial. Some thought he was too pop. However, compared to contemporary country music, Milsap now sounds more traditional than ever. No matter where Milsap has fit along the country spectrum, though, he has ...

Thomas Rhett
Country Again: Side A

Thomas Rhett is in the artistic zone. Rhett Atkins' boy never really struggled to get noticed, but starting around 2015, his impact went nuclear – "Die A Happy Man" wasn't just a number one, but a monster that stayed there for two months. The ACM Award for Entertainer of the ...

Justin Moore
Straight Outta The Country

Justin Moore said of "Straight Outta the Country" that if fans loved 2019's "Late Nights and Longnecks," they would love this one. It makes sense. His sixth studio album is effectively the spawn of his 2019 chart topper. Moore said, "We had three times as many songs as ...

Luke Bryan
Born Here Live Here Die Here deluxe

If there's one thing Luke Bryan knows how to do, it's to stay in his lane. And why not? It often leads to great chart position. The Deluxe edition of his seventh album "Born Here, Live Here, Die Here" was born out of the pandemic tour stoppage. It includes six new songs and ...

Carrie Underwood
My Savior

Carrie Underwood's gospel music album may not be traditional in the sense that she sings these songs the same way she heard them as a child growing up. However, on the traditional/modern country music spectrum, this album leans closer to traditional country music than just about anything ...

Wild & Blue
Restless

The debut release from the Santa Cruz, Cal. father/daughter duo known as Wild & Blue is a pleasing mix of classic country and '60s soul. Dad Steve Bennett is the creative force of the family band writing all of the nine original tracks, but the album is driven by the powerful vocals of daughter April Bennett. ...

Sara Watkins
Under the Pepper Tree

Understand that this is a children's album. Yet, if you're looking for the sounds of Sara Watkins with her groups Nickel Creek and I'm With Her bandmates, they are here on "Under the Pepper Tree," just not in the way you typically hear them. The album also features guest ...

The Alex Leach Band
When I'm Moving

The full-length debut of the North Carolina-based Alex Leach Band boasts a prominent producer in Jim Lauderdale and an authentic bluegrass sound in the tradition of Ralph Stanley. Leach wrote or co-wrote six of the 11 tracks, including the sentimental ballad "The Turntable" in which he ...

Melissa Carper
Daddy's Country Gold

Singer/songwriter and upright bassist Melissa Carper is the genuine article. Her style evokes greats like Kitty Wells, Billie Holiday and Loretta Lynn, as heard in the dozen tunes on "Daddy's Country Gold." The "daddy" is not her father, but in a way the title owes to him too. ...

David Olney and Anana Kaye
Whispers and Sighs

With the passing of David Olney in January 2020, "Whispers and Sighs" serves not only as a posthumous tribute to the singer/songwriter, but as a document that his gift remained intact until the end. Olney shares the spotlight and co-wrote all tracks with Nashville-based singer/songwriter ...

Brandy Clark
Your Life is a Record (Deluxe)

The purpose for 'deluxe editions' of albums is not entirely clear, except perhaps to breathe new life into an aging album. This marketing ploy is especially curious in the case of Brandy Clark's "Your Life is a Record." After all, this already is a fully satisfying album, so ...


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