Review : Shooter Jennings - Family Man
No depressionFamily Man is musically sophisticated without being showy. The members of The Triple Crown have seen their share of rodeos, and as a band, they sound like they could do anything. Jennings shows great restraint as producer, deploying this incredible talent where and when needed, giving us an album that works very well sonically. With lyrics that move from accessible rhymes to more complex structure, sometimes in the same song, Family Man hooks you and keeps you interested. The result is a great record, great in the ways that records used to be great: impeccable musicians playing well on a variety of songs that work well together....full text
Saving country musicSo here comes a new album from Shooter Jennings called Family Man, his highly anticipated, slightly-delayed return to his country roots after a foray into the industrial side of music with his last offering, Black Ribbons. Though Shooter’s sonic style may not always be predictable, I’ve found his last few albums to be that very thing in the respect that they will have their moments of greatness, balanced by moments of sheer weirdness and ill-advised content, and when you’re done you’re left with a mixed bag.
Family Man starts off very country, and very good with the song “The Real Me”. A very fun structure and wording, this song allows Shooter to show off his use of dynamics. The second song “The Long Road Ahead” is a good one too, and may be the “hit” of the album, though it is retarded significantly by an out-of-place guitar wank by former Rage Against The Machine axe man Tom Morello lunging at you unexpectedly like a crazy ex-girlfriend wielding rusty scissors....full text
L.A. TimesAfter the psychedelic dystopia of 2010’s “Black Ribbons,” Shooter Jennings returns to his dust-kicker roots on “Family Man.” Or, more specifically, as he blows out in one breath on “The Real Me”: “I’m a double-talkin’, chicken-lickin’, meaner-than-the-dickens, sick and wicked, hole-diggin’ son of a gun!” Forgive us; we thought you were just the progeny of Waylon Jennings and Jessi Colter.
Jennings is a Rust Belt Renaissance man on this collection of 10 songs that roams from Southern rock to melodic ballads that sound like Harry Nilsson hopping a train with a steel guitar. Whatever tack Jennings takes, it’s with gusto and pride. On “Southern Family Anthem,” which sounds like Tom Petty in a rough mood, the chorus is “We may be trash but we’re a family.”...full text
Rough StockShooter Jennings had a hit on country radio during the summer of 2004 called “Fourth of July” and while his music never really changed that much while signed with Universal Records South from 2004 to 2009, that would be the only certifiable radio hit of his career. After recording a couple of albums outside of the country music genre, Shooter has returned to his roots with his own new label Black Country Rock which he’s released in partnership with Entertainment One (eOne), a label which has re-opened with this release.
Even if mainstream country radio doesn’t play any songs off of Family Man, that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t. They really could do with a little more variety and unique artists on the airwaves, And Shooter Jennings is definitely a unique and heritage country act worthy of any and all attention he receives....full text
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