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The Salty Dogs

Brand New Reason – 2010 (Max)

Reviewed by Nelson Gullett

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CDs by The Salty Dogs

On their fourth release, Little Rock, Ark.'s The Salty Dogs deliver a fine disc incorporating many roots styles. The lead-off Rock and Roll Will Never Stay bounces along to a breezy electric piano and guitar-fueled groove that, by its very existence, disproves the assertion made by the song's title and serves as a rebuttal to the preacher who delivers a sermon against the musical genre in question.

The opening notes of Knock 3X borrow heavily from T-Rex's Bang a Gong before unleashing a muscular guitar riff that would fit nicely on any Reckless Kelly album. It helps that Williams' voice can bear a strong resemblance to Kelly's Willy Braun. Second Chance and Old Folks Home take a more traditional country turn and recall the glory days of Bakersfield. On their cover of Chuck Berry's Nadine, the Dogs show they are more than capable of pulling off an all-out guitar rock strut.

They prove they can handle the quieter moments as well with the windswept western blues of Another Day in a Small Town. Lead singer Brad Williams perfectly captures the helpless feeling of living in a small town that is too small to hold you down, but seemingly too large to escape

With only 8 tracks and just over 32 minutes of music, you might wish the Dogs had fleshed this one out with a few more tracks. Despite its brevity, however, this provides plenty of reasons to give a listen.