First, I’d just like to say that I am a Hank III fan. I’ve been a fan since before ninebullets started, and I’ll be a fan of most of his back catalog long after ninebullets goes dark. With that said, despite having defended Damn Right, Rebel Proud, and this album essentially being the same thing, I find The Rebel Within to be redundant, uninspired at times and down right juvenile at others. I dunno, maybe I’m just moving on or maybe now, two albums removed from Straight To Hell, I am not willing to overlook the cliche anymore. The real fuck of it, the rub if you will, is that you know it’s in there, it flashes once on Rebel Within in the form of “Karmageddon”. I know some are gonna say that this was just something he pushed out to get out from under Curb Records, and if that’s the case I say fine, but no one should buy it. If he was so eager to get away from Curb that he was willing to cobble together a set of songs that should have been on a garage band’s cutting room floor, then he shouldn’t expect people to buy it (viva la torrent!).
Honestly, I hope that’s the case, but my fear is that Straight To Hell was III’s country high water mark and that his real passion lies in Assjack and whatnot cause at this point his “country” thing is turing into little more than a silly caricature.