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CD REVIEW: JAMES CAROTHERS – Honky Tonk Land

| 8 November 2014 | Reply

james-carothers-680

Label: Renegade Mountain Records

Release Date: October 21, 2014

Rating: 8.5/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

You never know what is going to land on your desk when you offer to review different material.  The debut from James Carothers falls outside my normal listening material.  “New Country Singers” seems to take a shot at a lot of the hit country songs today, just as the recent single about Country girls in songs does.  The music is a bit twangy and old fashioned, but James does it well and his vocals fall in line with the musical style on this track.  “Mississippi Clay” is another track that grabs a more classic feel from country music, but adds his baritone and some cool guitar work to the mix, giving this a blended style that should please fans of old and new country.  Title track “Honky Tonk Land” is a fun track that allows Carothers to flex his vocal muscle and show off his range and different styles.  The mellow track may reduce the pace, but certainly not the quality.  “She’s Too Crazy” is one of the more diverse tracks on the disc – the tempo seems off compared to the other tracks here, but the guitar work is cool between verses and during the bridge.

“I Must Be Alive” leans to the newer side of country, with more cool guitars, a crossover style vocal – especially at the chorus – that sounds like many of his contemporaries that are all over radio today.  “Have Another Round” opens with a guitar riff that made me think of “Barracuda” immediately, but soon showcases his lower range vocals and some classic country feel when the fiddle kicks in during the pre-chorus.  “Trouble In Paradise” gets the foot tapping from the first note and keeps it going til the last note is played.  This is one of those songs you expect to hear blaring through the speakers of the Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville, especially when the chorus kicks in.  This track is made for line dancing.  Disc closer “Where Did We Come From?” shows James’ softer side, while not watering down the track or disc.  This track has an anthemic feel to it and comes off as one of those ‘Good ‘Ol Boy with country roots’ songs.  Well done on this disc James – I can’t wait to see when the rest of the country music listening world figures out this disc exists!

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Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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