Autopsy IV is on his annual pilgrimage to strap a board to the bottom of his feet and slide down mountains. While he is away 9B will feature a collection of guest posts. Today’s post comes from our good buddy and regular contributor, Adam Fenwick.
Anyone thinking that Hill Country Revue’s first offering, Make A Move, was a fluke need only pick up their sophomore effort, Zebra Ranch, to find they were horribly mistaken.
Made up of new material and a few covers (including a smoking version of blues standard Going Down and The Rolling Stones’s Wild Horses), Zebra Ranch (which is named after the late Jim Dickinson’s home recording studio, where both Hill Country Revue albums were recorded) picks up right where Make A Move left off. With the same funkified guitars, rhythm and sound that made the first record so immensely fun, Hill Country Revue has, in this mans opinion, stepped to the top of funk/southern rock/blues heap.
While I love the North Mississippi Allstars (and I truly do), I really feel like Hill Country Revue has kicked N.M.A. to the proverbial curb (editor note: Autopsy IV agrees) and taken over the mantel as the better of the two bands (even though the bands share two members, Cody Dickinson and Chris Chew). If you like blues blended with funk and some old fashioned southern rock, pick up Hill Country Revue is your kind of band.
Like all good records, Zebra Ranch is best played loud. So pick it up, turn it up and rock until the cows (or zebras) come home. Yeah, I know that was lame. Just pick up the damn record. You won’t regret it.
Hill Country Revue – Going Down
Hill country Revue – Zebra Ranch
Hill Country Revue’s Official Site, Hill Country Revue on Facebook, Buy Zebra Ranch (currently only 5 dollars)
A couple of weeks ago Hill Country Revue came to town opening for North Mississippi Allstars and plum took over the show. So good was their set that I was honestly bored with the bulk of the N.M.A. set.
Hill Country Revue is fellow N. Mississippi Allstars Cody Dickinson and Chris Chew being joined by Kirk Smithhart, Ed “Hot” Cleveland and Dixie Dan Coburn. As if that isn’t enough, the majority of the album was written by the youngest of R.L. Burnside’s children, Garry Burnside. There are so many Grammys, bloodlines, pedigrees and touring miles in this lineup that you almost expect it to be a hill country blues clinic, but really it turns out to be a funky southern blues rock album as much as anything else.
Over the years I’ve felt like the N. Mississippi Allstars and myself have been set off on divergent musical paths. I still buy their new albums, but after 5 or 10 listens they end up forgotten. Make A Move seems to possess that raw dirt under the fingernails energy that the first couple of N.M.A. albums had, and I for one am finding it to be Essential Listening.
Hill Country Revue is currently on the road doing festival dates and filling support slots throughout the summer. This Fall they are planning on heading out for a complete headlining tour and trust me, it’ll be worth catching.
Hill Country Revue – Alice Mae
Hill Country Revue’s Official Site, Hill Country Revue on myspace, Buy Make A Move