Alabama 3 are continuing to corner the alt.country/dance crossover market with their latest full length release ‘Outlaws’. There is a moment of dissonance when you start to hear the tracks contained within; the beats are solid, even classic dance but they are surrounded by the instruments of country music, blues and bluegrass. Banjos battle synth, fiddles and slide guitars stand defiant against hip hop backing and harmonicas contrast squelching electronica. The gravely vocals throughout alternately scat, rap, rock and croon as the mood takes them, each fitting perfectly the tunes they are paired with.
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There are guest appearances by BJ Cole (pedal steel guitar hero), Gary Lucas (Magic Band), Bruce Richard Reynolds (Brains behind the Great Train Robbery, providing vocals on the track bearing his name) and MC Tunes (Yeah, I thought he was dead too). One of the most effective of these is ‘Have You Seen Bruce Richard Reynolds?’ which is more countrified than some of its bedfellows but is in the classic relentless storytelling style. The comedy and good time vibe of the tribute to the Man in Black that is ‘Hello…I’m Johnny Cash’ is undeniable. There are so many great numbers on this album that deserve to be heard far and wide.
Label : One Little Indian
Release Date : 06 June 2005
Website : www.alabama3.co.uk