The road to Bomshel's debut disc was not easy. A previous incarnation of the duo charted four singles, including Bomshel Stomp, but without a lot of success to show for their efforts. Fiddle player Kristy Osmunson and singer Kelley Shepard released four more singles (!), a distinct rarity in this bottom line driven business. Not sure how much fight was required to get it done, but five years into their record deal, they finally released 11-song set.
Sometimes you really can tell a book by its cover. In the case of Bomshel, the name of the duo is supposed to capitalize on their good looks. Osmunson and Shepard may be good looking, and while not over the top, the emphasis on the cover is their attractiveness. But, of course, ultimately, looks only get you so far because ultimately it's a case of whether there's anything to the music.
In Bomshel's case, the answer is a partial yes, maybe. But only if your idea of country is uptempo, pounding drums and guitar driven pop (the lead-off 19 and Crazy). The vocals are strong with good harmonies from Osmunson, recalling SHeDAISY (the title track, Arizona). There's nothing new under the sun here, and their cover of Just a Girl from No Doubt (the only song they did not help write) indicates quite clearly that this is not some dyed-in-the-wool country act. Curiously, they follow that snappy song with Fiddle where the country element does come through, but one is left with the feeling that these are dabblers instead of living and feeling the songs they sing.