It's probably inevitable that some will regard the Derailers' latest as representing artistic compromises motivated by the dictates of the major label imprint that released it. But this record is full of thoroughly fine, modern country music, and is more accurately viewed as a continuation of what the Derailers have always done: developed and expanded their sound by building upon the heavily-influenced Buck'n'Beatles vibe of their early efforts.
Rest assured, there's plenty of vintage Derailers honky tonk here - the shuffling "Bar Exam," the instrumental "Country A Go-Go," the rocking closer "There Goes the Bride," for example. But there's also the Orbisonesque heartbreak grandeur of "I See My Baby;" there's also the cross-pollination introduced by songs from the likes of Kostas and Jim Lauderdale (who coauthored three, count'em, three of the tracks, including a co-write with Derailers principals Hofeldt and Villanueva on "Your Guess Is As Good As Mine"); and there's also The Derailers nailing a country-soul groove on covers of "Mohair Sam" and "If It's Really Got To Be This Way." Above all, there's the sound of a band hitting its stride and making its mark. This is easily the best record the Derailers have made, and just as easily one of the best records of the year.