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BLACKBERRY SMOKE Like An Arrow

By Jay Roberts, Massachusetts Contributor
Monday, December 5, 2016 @ 3:36 PM


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BLACKBERRY SMOKE
Like An Arrow

3 Legged Records - 2016
http://www.blackberrysmoke.com




The contemporary flag bearers for the southern rock-slash-country music genre of rock and roll music, BLACKBERRY SMOKE's follow up to their outstanding Holding All The Roses CD finds them raising their game as well as their profile.

Like An Arrow kicks off right from the start with a crunchy anthemic "Waiting For The Thunder". It is the song the band was featured playing in a recent episode of the TV series NCIS: New Orleans, and it is a perfect encapsulation of the band's sound. The uptempo number sets you back on your heels as it bursts out of the speakers and then draws you right back in.

In fact, the first four songs on the album are outstanding. There's a step lively feel to the more definitively country music track "Let It Burn". It is a rollicking good time with a Brandon Still's piano work given a particularly noteworthy spotlight. "The Good Life" is an ode to a taciturn father, which gives an ironic twist to the song's lyrics because the sentiment conveyed in them is beautiful.

"What Comes Naturally" is another track with the piano played up. There's a sly and a wink kind of playful vibe to the music and the vocal performance from Charlie Starr. There's something about his singing that really strikes a chord and since he wrote or co-wrote every song on the album, the music is definitely coming from his point of view.

Unfortunately, "Running Through Time" is the one song on the album that come off as a flat and uninspired filler track. Meanwhile, "Ought To Know" and the album's title track have an electric and compelling feel to them. There is also an earworm quality to "Believe You Me", the music in particular.

There are more worthy cuts to balance this disc out again though. The song "Sunrise In Texas" (which is credited as a band written song alongside a co-writer) is a slow burning track that varies its tempo throughout the song's run time. I daresay that it could be pointed to as the album's thematic centerpiece as the song hits its mark all the way through.I loved the acoustic guitar that was threaded throughout "Ain't Gonna Wait". The gritty guitar work and fast pacing for the rocker "Workin' For A Workin' Man" gives the song a great hit single quality.

The disc closes out with "Free On A Wing" which is a midtempo track that is enhanced by the vocal presence of Gregg Allman.

In all, Like An Arrow gives BLACKBERRY SMOKE yet another great album to their discography. They are a band to continually keep an eye on as they help to enliven the musical lives of anyone who listens to them!

4.5 Out Of 5.0

Grab a copy of Like An Arrow in the KNAC.COM More Store right HERE.


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