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Hot off the presses

Check out this new article by Bill DeYoung at the Connect Savannah.

Hot off the presses

THE TRAIN WRECKS

Saddle Up

“We get loud but we never get bored,” Jason Bible sings in “Tennessee Mare,” the opening track on the Train Wrecks’ just–released second album. That’s a pretty good summation of the entire Train Wrecks experience – raucous and perpetually in overdrive, Savannah’s premiere Americana band is never anything but exciting. The band’s live shows are loud, and by God, you won’t get close to bored.

Bible and his bandmates have been playing most of these songs in concert for a year or more, so anyone who’s caught a Train Wrecks show (and since they’re gigging all the time, it’s a distinct possibility) will recognize the galloping “Tennessee Mare,” the defiant Western stomps “Head For the Hills” and “Hang Me High,” the sweeping and pseudo–psychedelic “Southern Skies” and the elegiac “Not the End.” The band submits balls–out rock ‘n’ roll, and Western swing. There’s even a haunting, uptempo instrumental, “Song For Sally.”

The album has been produced with pointed accents on reverb and echo, with a cloud of poignant pedal steel guitar floating somewhere in the moody sky – giving everything a ghostly, urgent, desperate feel. And that’s perfect for these songs about recklessness, redemption and righteousness.

The Train Wrecks’ power source, of course, is the knuckle–tight rhythm section of drummer Marcus Kuhlmann and bassist Eric Dunn. And Stuart Harmening’s dobro, slide guitar and chicken–picking leads give the songs a muscular and cohesive flex.

But it’s singer/songwriter Bible that makes Saddle Up ride tall from start to finish. His gravelly Texas yowl and growl evoke a world–weary outlaw on the run, a cowboy questioning his place in the world, a young Southerner obsessed with whiskey, war and the unfettered joy of making music. “Cold, Cold Stone” is the album’s stunner – it’s both anthemic and chilling.

Recorded at Savannah’s Elevated Basement Studio, Saddle Up joins Eric Culberson’s In the Outside – also tracked in the Basement – as the cornerstones of an already great year for homegrown music. See thetrainwrecksband.com

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