Album Review: Wrinkle Neck Mules – Let The Lead Fly [10/20 Lower40 Records]
Oct 19th, 09
Well here is probably my most anticipated album of the year. You guys have heard me talk about for a few months now, ever since I found out about it no less. Well I’m here to tell you, if you are already a fan of Wrinkle Neck Mules this album does not let down! It is everything a Wrinkle Neck Mules album should be….teemed to the brim and overflowing with sweet americana (or whatever they are calling it nowadays) sounds that are as unique as they are familiar.
Now this may not be the most objectionable review, fact is I love the Wrinkle Neck Mules. I think they should be at the top of the american/alt-country whatever heap, and the fact that they are not still baffles me. These guys, and this album is a damn fine representation of that….they should win awards for this album! Get some wider recognition at the very least. The instrumentation, the songwriting, the arrangements, all of it top notch.
Now let’s talk about the songs a minute here. The tracks alternate pretty consistently between what I like to call smooth twangers and rugged twangers. I wish I could tell you who’s singing what songs, but I just don’t know. The one guy has the rugged southern drawl, and the other has the smooth southern drawl, and I’m pretty sure there is a third guy in there too. Regardless, the sequencing plays like a great boxer continuously hitting you with one-two punches. Let The Lead Fly picks up where 2007’s Wicks Have Met left off, while also bringing back some of the more traditional aspects of 2006’s Pull The Brake. The result is a damn fine album, with songs like “Fortune Fades” recalling “Cadillac Limosine”, “Catfish & Color TV’s” recalling “Okeechobee”, and “Before The Rise and Fall” recalling “The Wicks Have Met”. But that is greatly simplifying things. Fact is this is a band consisting of many talented individuals who somehow manage to pull themselves together as a single band and make albums that keep getting better.
I said earlier in this review that this album is everything a Wrinkle Neck Mules album should be….I would like to recant that and say that Let The Lead Fly is everything an AMERICANA album should be! So if you are a fan of classic alt-country like Uncle Tupelo & Son Volt, a fan of good old fashioned country rock like the Byrds and The Burritos, a fan of bluegrass and country that’s not afraid to rock, or just a fan of damn good music in general…..this album is for you. It’s a damn fine album and I’ll stand by that!