Bill Kirchen: Tied to the Wheel (2001) MP3/Flac
Though he's plowed roughly the same furrow for more than 20 years, Bill Kirchen's brand of dieselbilly/high-octane country has yet to grow stale. Here, with the same rhythm section from 1999's Raise Up a Ruckus, he offers another set of choice covers and a handful of originals. Red Simpson's forlorn ballad "Roll Truck Roll" and Blackie Farrell's "One More Hour of Blues" are vintage Bakersfield country and, oddly enough, fit perfectly well with a straight reading of Dylan's "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" and the lightning-fast newgrass of "How Mountain Girls Can Love" (with drummer Jack O'Dell on lead). The previously unheard Commander Cody era "Truck Stop at the End of the World" is Kirchen at his best -- smokin' Telecaster licks and clever lyrics with a sense of humor. The instrumental "Poultry in Motion" is a showcase for his version of chicken-pickin', the plucky playing style with roots in his hometown of Washington, D.C.