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The Lost Trailers

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Album Review

On their eponymous fourth album, the Lost Trailers once again find the perfect balance of rootsy neo-country and ballsy, road-tested rock that has brought them an increasingly faithful following in their six years together. Although they've collectively cited the band Alabama as their primary influence, the Lost Trailers owe more to the working-class, testosterone-fueled rock of bands like Drive-By Truckers, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers and Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, with a touch of early Eagles, Let It Bleed-era Rolling Stones ("All This Love" is a ringer for "No Expectations"), and good ol' Allman Brothers/Lynyrd Skynyrd-brand Southern rock tossed in. But as much fun as it is to play spot-the-influences, the Lost Trailers have by now developed a trademark, post-alt-country sound of their own that gives them, on their most accomplished effort to date, an assuredness and weightiness that one can easily imagine carrying them well in arena-sized venues. Chief songwriter Stokes Nielson takes the band's Southern heritage seriously: in "I'm a Country Man," he proudly declares that he's "born to be kickin' it from Texas to Tennessee/Got the same truck since I's 18/Gonna drive it to the wheels fall off," while in "Gravy," he addresses the foreclosure of the family farm and his late granddad's novel suggestion on how to dig out from failure: "He left a bag with a note on the side, it read 'Plant these seeds and watch 'em rise'...Well, I had the farm paid off in 23 days" (no wonder Willie Nelson loves these guys so much). Although the Lost Trailers veer at times (though not often enough for it to be a problem) toward cliché lyrically, and bar-band generics in their song structures, there's no mistaking the honesty inherent in this music.


Formed: July 4, 2000 in Nashville, TN

Genre: Country

Years Active: '00s, '10s

The framework for country band the Lost Trailers has been around ever since guitarist and songwriter Stokes Nielson and a high school friend of his from Atlanta, keyboardist/vocalist Ryder Lee, released the independent CD The Story of the New Age Cowboy. It worked out so well that Nielson took the songs to the Nashville bar circuit, playing with Lee, a drummer, and a bassist as Stokes Nielson & the Lost Trailers, a name that was spawned from the fact that their tour trailer had been stolen twice...
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