It seems as if Country Music Week has largely passed me by. Living in North Wales, I’d like to think it’s the location – predominantly London – that is largely to blame. However, I have to admit that the reason for my failure to keep up with the action at this inaugural event is simply down to the fact that I’ve had a rather busy last seven days. Life can just get in the way sometimes. I was determined to find some opening in this period though to at least tune into some country music. Apart from Drake White’s excellent session with Bob Harris on Thursday, I’ve just spent Sunday evening in the company of Journey Home. Their new EP “Nights Like These” was released on 29th September, and what an excellent record it is. With a distinct blend of country and rock, the four-piece band have managed to create a fabulous, feel good album. If you’re wondering where I’d place them in terms of sound, I would say Rascal Flatts – but with a lot more rock! “Ain’t Quite a Truck” certainly evokes their musical style and sound; but I would say that Journey Home are distinct enough not to simply be labelled the UK version of this multi award-winning band. There is certainly some great songwriting on show here. I particularly love the chorus to title track “Nights Like These”, including the line ‘Johnny’s all the Cash I’ll ever need’. It is a great play on words and reveals something of the band’s attitude – upbeat, fun and simply wanting to have a good time. This really does come out in their music. Both “Memory Lane” (what a great track this is!) and “Just One More” are songs that follow a buoyant and joyous narrative. If you don’t feel like dancing, you will after these tracks. The latter, in particular, will lighten your mood immediately. I know that intros are getting shorter but, as a young person, I could have happily listened to the opening riffs of this song for well over twenty seconds. Instantly likeable. These boys prove that they can slow the tempo down too on “Big City Lights”. A bit more stripped back, it still evokes a Southern rock sound that begs the question, ‘Are you sure these guys are actually British?!’ Indeed they are, and on the evidence of this EP, we are lucky to have such fantastic talent this side of the pond. Country Music week may have passed me by, but with these guys, I certainly don’t feel like I’ve missed a trick.
Featured Image (C) Journey Home