May 28, 2019 Texas Hippie Coalition – High In The Saddle (Album Review)
Emerging out of the Lone Star State onto the Metal scene with deep Country and Rock influences, Texas Hippie Coalition are a unique bunch. Blazing their own path, and defying whatever trends have come and gone over the past decade, the boys are ready to stir the pot once again on Friday, May 31st with forthcoming new album, High In The Saddle.
A horse of a different color, Texas Hippie Coalition is a genre all it’s own, and if it must be described, think of a mash-up between Pantera, Charlie Daniel’s Band, Hellyeah, and Molly Hatchet. Dubbed Red Dirt Metal by founding Vocalist Big Dad Ritch, he and his friend John Exall launched the band around 15 years ago. Since sustaining several changes in their lineup, but never suffering in their potency, Big Dad Ritch currently leads the pack completed by Cord Pool (guitar), Nevada Romo (guitar), Rado Romo (bass), and Devon Carothers (drums). Together they team up with Bob Marlette for the first time since the 2012 album Peacemaker to show they know how to throw a party and rock hard.
Their sixth overall studio album, and coming a few years following the success of 2016’s Dark Side of Black, High In The Saddle is complete with ten new hard-rocking, gritty and raw cuts that you can really bang your head to. Their first album with Entertainment One, it kicks off with the rowdy rocker “Moonshine.” Picked as the lead single, released back on March 29th, it is a great way to launch an album that is dirty, heavy, and melodically irresistible with songs like “Dirty Finger.” In fact, “Dirty Finger” is not only heavy, it is one you can sing, or yell along with until the very end.
On the other side of the coin, tracks such as “Ride or Die” really gives you a look at another side of Big Dad Ritch when he is matched with melodic instrumentation and given a chance to show-off a deeper, grittier voice. There is “Bulls Eye,” one of the more unique songs off this album where are there are some Country undertones mixed with the Rock. Here, the raw power of Big Dad Ritch’s voice matched with the Country and Rock make for an amazing fusion.
Not to be overlooked, songs like the Blues laden “Tongue Like A Devil,” vocal intense “Why Aren’t You Listening,” raw ‘Tell it From the Ground,” and up beat closer “Blue Lights On” are all worthy of raising the volume a few notches. Unapologetic in their approach, their southern roots bleed through in each and every song they write and High In The Saddle is no different. Not necessarily breaking any new ground, but more concentrating on putting together a solid collection of well-written tunes, this album does not disappoint nor leave anything left to be desired. A stress free listen of pure, heavy Southern Rock, Cryptic Rock gives High In The Saddle 5 out of 5 stars.