As much as Oklahoman’s pride themselves in saying how Red Dirt music is what ever you want to label it, as long as the can call it their own, I’m still surprised how many people aren’t sure what to label Hays Carll. I decided to pop in his new album Trouble In Mind and review it for you. If you could look back at some of the revolutionaries in music you find that they were always pushing the envelope.
Trouble in Mind pushes the boundaries of what most of us would consider “traditional” country music, but no one complained when Willie, Waylon, or Cash did it. Maybe some complained at first but the wild of today’s country singers still pay homage to them. Hayes Carll followx in their footsteps painting a picture via song, which is what a good songwriter should be able to do. The opening track, written by Carll and a legend himself in the red dirt/Texas music scene, Wylie Hubbard, “Drunken Poet’s Dream” sets the mood for the whole album. In “Bad Liver And A Broken Heart” Carll paints a picture of any 20 something man’s battling everyday struggles with love and life and even pay’s homage to Oklahoma. “Faulkner Street”makes you want to gather up your old buddies and hit the town for a good time and some trouble.
Trouble In Mind is a solid album. My favorite tracks are “Wild As A Turkey”, “Don’t Let Me Fall”, and “Knockin’ Over Whiskeys”. If you are offended by some of the songs on this album just wait for the final cut “She Left Me for Jesus”. The title alone is sure to offend.
Trouble in Mind is Americana at its best… wait did I just try and put label on something? Blender Magazine ranked it 33 on their Top Albums of 2008 and SPIN Magazine says it’s “the tastiest, perched between stadium rockabilly and Dylan-worship folk rock.” Funny thing, but Bob Dylan is one of Carll’s idols.
WHEW! I don’t know if I’m going to be able to follow up this album review so go buy Trouble In Mind by Hayes Carll and thank me later.
– The Rooster