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The History of Cut Nails In America

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Album Review

Shortstack tries to invoke a great deal of an Americana feel to it on History of Cut Nails in America, but it's a hit-and-miss affair for the most part. The rolling, chugging "Wiseblood" has a rockabilly bend to it à la Stray Cats but also brings to mind a group like Elliott Brood. However, they hit paydirt with the refined, crisper, darker and sharper arrangement on "Riverbend" that could be mistaken for a cover of an old Jimmie Rodgers train yodel effort performed by Chris Isaak. Just as strong is the lonesome feel one gets from the simple but infectious "Wreckin' Ball" that is in no hurry to wrap up. Things stay on course during the rambling, rowdy rave-up of "Good Intentions," so much so that the listener will have a hard time not dancing to it. Think of Elvis Presley performing "Mystery Train" and this might have been a possible B-side. If there is one drawback to this record, though, it's that Shortstack walk down the same path far too often. A perfect example of this is "Two White Horses," which has a similar rockabilly pace as earlier tunes. Another one is the tired instrumental "G.B.D.," that drags the album down somewhat. A notable departure from this is the pleasing but slow "Man in Love" that strolls along with a Hank Williams-like gait. "Tomorrow Never Comes" has a jazzy, swinging vibe to it that is also another welcome change.

Customer Reviews

Really good album

Great album, can't wait for the new one to see what the band's been up to!

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