In the fall of 2011 in Minneapolis, the band mates of Maiden Dixie, comprised of three music/composition majors, two Iraq War combat veterans and a former Division One basketball player, combined their talents to create an energetic, passion filled country rock unit. On April 14th of this year they released their sophomore record, UNSAFE & SOUND. The record, which contains eight well written tracks, is a diverse, yet united one. It hits everything from rock and country to bluegrass and gospel in tracks that are both raucous and emotional. Lead vocals are shared by both Channing Himes and Jesse Becker while players Drew Sherman (bass), Jonathan Krentz (guitar), Zachary Scanlan (fiddle) and Tyler Kloewer (drums) combine their talents into a sound uniquely their own.
Opening the record is “An Honest Man’s Wage” a melodically haunting song (that seems like it would fit right in on a TV show like Justified) with simple instrumentation and lyrics about working on living an honest life, however difficult that may be. The lighthearted “Shoulda’ Gone Home,” about perhaps partying a little too hard, is a country rocker with guitar, fiddle and organ that combine for a fun tune that is sure to be a hit live. Standout track “Too Close to Goodbye” focuses on healing the wounds of a relationship and turning the hurt around. “So afraid of what I might say/Words will heal or cut like a blade.”
The emotional, and highly relatable, duet “If I Had To Guess” has each party (post-break up) wondering what their ex is doing now while “Love Revival,” with its gospel flair and on point harmonies, speaks of keeping a relationship afloat, knowing there’s brighter times ahead. “We could walk away, throw our hands up in the air/Or we could keep the faith, knowin we've still got a prayer.”
“Story of Our Own” is a beautiful song with an Americana feel about how the rough times in a relationship can actually make a relationship stronger, while “Bullet in The Gun,” which starts off with the sound of a gun being cocked, has an all rocking, rebellious feel. The album closes with the lovely, and touching “The Road” about the different (good and bad) paths in life.
Purchase UNSAFE & SOUND here