Emperors of Wyoming
Liaison Music
Street: 03.25
EOW = Tom Petty + The Byrds + George Jones

This is an interesting record. It is essentially a re-release of a record that came out in Europe a few years back. The American version adds a few more songs and remixes everything. People are paying attention because the band features Butch Vig, drummer for Garbage and famed producer of alt-rock records like Nirvana’s Nevermind. Musically, the 13 tracks on the album skirt the line between American roots music, old country and folk. It’s not a rock record per se, but it isn’t a country record either—it just is. And it sounds like it has always been. The music is gritty yet clean, and the lyrics nestle in somewhere between the Heartbreakers and rebel country greats. Songs like “Bittersweet Sound” and “Avalanche Girl” certainly pay homage to the experiences of the musicians playing here, but they also manage to hold their own and fight for inclusion in the pantheon of great American music. –James Bennett