Over the course of 42 years and 30 albums, the Nitty Gritty Dirt
Band has covered a lot of stylistic territory. Most of them seem to
make a repeat appearance here. Such an eclectic mix of tracks could make for a rambling,
disjointed mess, but with the laid back groove of the band and some
low-key production choices, the album comes together as pleasantly
The music kicks off with a great toe-tapper - Tulsa Sounds Like
Trouble to Me - and ends with the Cajun-influenced Good To Be
Alive. In between, the band pays tribute to Jimmy Martin (Jimmy Martin), recalls Woodstock (Going Up The Country) and covers Matraca Berg (Resurrection). If there's a low point, it's an unnecessary cover of the overused-in-commercials Stuck in
the Middle, but even that manages to find a groove when John McEuen's banjo shines through.
Unlike some of NGDB's history making albums, "Speed of Life" isn't
breaking much new ground, but it sounds like an album the boys in the band had a lot of fun making, and that fun translates well to the listening.