It has once again come that time of year for reflecting back on some of the best albums released in the last 12 months or so, not to treat country music as competition per se, but as an exercise undertaken with the intent of expanding your musical knowledge in hopes the gaps that formed due to the busy lives we all live get filled in with joyous little music projects.
Like An Arrow
When Blackberry Smoke’s album ‘Holding All The Roses’ went #1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart in February 2015, it was the first time an independently-released country album had climbed to the top of the country charts in the modern era. And now Blackberry Smoke has done it again.
Blackberry Smoke isn’t just saving country music, they’re rehabilitating the status of all American music by baptizing it in the muddy waters of the all-immersive guitar riff delivered unencumbered and fully amplified, flying in the face of all notions of present-day style or trend that acquiesce to eepish tones and textures.
“It’s not an afterthought like the kind of crap that is on country radio now,” said Blackberry Smoke frontman and primary songwriter, Charlie Starr in a recent interview. “It might be some people’s thing but it’s not mine. There’s not much of a statement, there’s no emotion — it’s hollow and that’s a drag.”
Blackberry Smoke isn’t just helping to save country music, they’re helping to save Southern rock music, rock music, American music, and music made by real humans sweating on a stage, holding real damn instruments, and testifying. In a time when we can’t agree on anything, music fans from a major swath of the population can agree on Blackberry Smoke.