Jack Ingram spent more than a decade trying to break out of Texas on the strength of his own tunes. This year, the stellar songwriter finally hit a hot streak: Ingram has scored nationally with two Top 20 country singles, "Live Wherever You Are" and "Love You." Ironically, both chart-toppers are cover songs.
Next time Ingram lifts a glass, he should toast Trent Summar for the latter. "Love You," the second track here, worked so well for Ingram because the song mirrors his own - effortlessly hooky, lyrically clever and brimming with high-octane thrust.
Same can be said for the entirety of Summar's new release. Full of grit and glory, cuts like "She Knows What to Do (With a Saturday Night)," "Louisville Nashville Line" and the title track practically define Texas honky tonk.
Witty turns like the sing-a-long "Pink John Deere" ("She's got a pink John Deere, four wheel drive/On our first date she took me for a ride.") best showcase Summar & the New Row Mob's potency. Even better, guest spots from former Mavericks frontman Raul Malo and Georgia Satellites guitarist Dan Baird add layers of depth and finesse.
While there's plenty of boozy energy here, when Summar lets his guard down on the closing "Girl From Tennessee" he proves that country boys have the most generous hearts.