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The Texas Sapphires

Roadhouse Gems – 2007 (Stag)

Reviewed by Robert Wooldridge

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CDs by The Texas Sapphires

As the title of this collection suggests there are plenty of good tunes in this live set by The Texas Sapphires, but, unfortunately, the quality of the recording is substandard.

There is a nice mix of classics and originals. Amongst the covers are Buck Owens's "Under Your Spell Again," Merle Haggard's "Tonight The Bottle Let Me Down" and Gram Parsons' "Ooh Las Vegas." Lead vocalist Billy Brent Malkus contributes several strong originals, including "Barstow Barstool," "Dirty Me (I'm Disgusted With Myself)" and "Cold Silver Ring."

The playing is solid throughout, especially with Malkus on guitar, piano and Dobro and Nathan Fleming on steel guitar. Rebecca Lucille Cannon shares lead vocal duties, but her voice sounds particularly muddled in the mix.

Though the Texas Sapphires deliver some good performances the bootleg quality of the recording makes this a difficult listen.