Men with bad intent and the women who suffer them is the loose theme of the latest Stumbleweeds disc, the Boston-based band's first since their 2001 debut ("their" beingused loosely, since singer Lynnette Lenker is the sole remaining member from that outing).
The mood is summed up by "Only Mama That'll Walk the Line," the answer song to the Waylon hit and one of several covers here. It's one of three songs, along with the album's title cut and "The Trouble With Girls" (men, natch) pulled from the repertoire of Jean Shepard, the walking country music definition of pull-no-punches depictions and take-no-crap attitude.
The band visits similar territory on Wanda Jackson's "A Girl Don't Have to Drink (to Have Fun)" and "Look Out Heart" (two of four Jackson covers here), and Lenker contributes her own take with the catchy honky-tonk lament, "Doggone Thing" ("you haven't done a doggone thing for me/unless you wanna count endless pregnancy"). Lenker delivers the sentiments with suitably feisty singing, backed by playing that's by turns vintage honky tonk, hillbilly and rockabilly. All in all, a great comeback by The Stumbleweeds. (147 Groton Road, North Chelmsford, MA 01863, 617-838-9278, E-Mail: email@example.com )