Jason Boland & The Stragglers’ sixth studio album, Rancho Alto, blends old style country tunes and adds a modern flair that both new and old fans can thoroughly enjoy. From the moment Rancho Alto begins, the listener is taken by Jason Boland’s rich voice. The moody, slow and passionate ballad that is “Every Moment I’m Gone” will hit the listener in the soft spot in their heart. “False Accuser’s Lament” contains some impressive fiddle work by Jeremy Watkins as well as an interesting story in Boland’s lyrics. Not only does “Between 11 and 2” bring a smooth vibe to the release but also dreamy vocals and a peaceful tambourine.
Boland introduces a harsher vocal tone in “Pushing Luck,” which also features brasher drums, and more classic sounding guitars. The narrative country style marches on with the nostalgic “Mary Ellen’s Greenhouse.” The tune puts the listener in a blissful mood due to the warm and peaceful vibe in the description.
Slow jams return with “Forever Together Again,” which highlights the good times and the need to remember one’s roots. Though the cut sounds a bit on the grim side, the listener can still extract some positivity from it through Boland’s reassuring voice. Rancho Alto ends with “Farmer’s Luck.” In the finale, the drums stand out among the other instruments and Boland opts for more of a sing-speak vocal style to close out the release.
Jason Boland & The Stragglers’ Rancho Alto brings moody country blues, splendid fiddle work, a lesson worth learning and even a few trips to the past together to create a record that can and will refresh country music fans everywhere.
In A Word: Classic