Artist: Read Southall Band
Album: "For the Birds"
Release Date: October 22, 2022
Artist Website: https://readsouthall.com/
Artist Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/readsouthallband/
Summary: The Read Southall band landed on our radar some time around 2017 with the "Borrowed Time" release. "Runnin'", "Why", and "Animals" were a few of the highlights that are still on regular rotation in the Cowboy Revolution office. Aside from the 2018 live recording "Live at Tower Theatre", this is their first studio-recorded album since 2017. It's on fire from the track one, "For the Birds". As a young William Miller would tell Russell Hammond, "And Russell, Russell, the guitar sound... is incendiary. Incendiary. Way to go." It's a coincidence that the band hails out of Stillwater, Oklahoma and the fictitious rock band in the movie "Almost Famous" is named Stillwater. It may be no coincidence that they both rock pretty hard with a similar sound. The opening song, also named "For the Birds", is indeed incendiary, but technically doesn't have lyrics, so unfortunately we can't really include it in the top songs to be nominated for a should-be single. Good thing is that this entire album was incinerated as well. Let's get to the list:
3rd Place: "DLTGYD"
That stands for "Don't let them get you down". This track serves a motivational call to arms, to stand for yourself and what you believe in. If you get knocked down, shake it off, and get back in the fight. The guitar licks at the intro are a motivation unto themselves. The back quarter of the song has a tempo swing that leads into almost Van Halen-esque fretwork. A perfect tune to zone out to in the gym or on a run when you're trying to get that last rep or last kick in.
2nd Place: "Rose Gold"
The sounds and tone of this track screams the color rose gold. Nice, mellow mid-tempo with smooth and easy drum and guitar. It almost feels like a country/southern rock "Amber" by 311, which is also another song that used a color to describe a lover's energy. This is a rare love song from the band. The kind of love that you just want to lie in bed together while the dishes pile up and life on the outside just goes by. The other side of these lyrics is the writer's confession that he is "tarnished silver" and his significant other is "rose gold". I think we've all been there before. "Why would SHE want anything to do with ME?". The down-to-earth love described in this song isn't a trip to Paris or an expensive diamond ring, it's just "let's lay here, and just be together".
Champion: "Where We Belong"
There are heavy "Explosions in the Sky" vibes to this song. Drums are very rudimentary, almost military-style. Overall, it's a mid-tempo, but the crescendo and howl mid-track give way to a glittering guitar solo and harmonies. There are some bells/chimes used sparingly that give it that extra dose of shine when needed. Read's lyrics speak a lot to being on the road a little too long, away from the things at home. In the end, there's a hope that "we'll find a way to get where we belong". This song reminds me of a boat day on the lake with the sun shimmering on the glass-flat water with nothing but a cold drink and a breeze on the brain.
Would Hank have done it this way?
Would country radio play these songs?
Will the fans receive this album favorably?