Portland’s Blitzen Trapper‘s eighth album “All Across This Land” is an ode to classic rock, with Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty and Joe Walsh influences felt strongly throughout. The latter is especially true on the album opening title track, replete with a sweet guitar lick and Rolling Stones’s trademark ‘hoo hoos’. Regarding Joe Walsh, lead singer and main songwriter Eric Earley enthuses;
He’s always been one of my favourite guitar players, and you can hear it on the album. The riffs and chords on “All Across This Land”, that’s straight from Joe Walsh.
This American tinged rock is the main preserve of this record. ‘Rock and Roll (Was Made For You)’ is another slab of head bopping 4 to the floor rock, with the visceral power chords of Marty Marquis, Erik Menteer and Eric Earley combining well. The big, epic sound of Bruce Springsteen is imitated excellently on ‘Nights were Made For Love’. With it’s nostalgic lyrics looking back on high school days and the bands beginnings, it could easily fit in on “Darkness on the Edge of Town”. The powerful ‘Cadillac Road’ is of the same ilk, it is about the mill closing down and the turmoil caused – blue collar lyrics The Boss and John Mellencamp would be proud to call their own.
Blitzen Trapper’s more traditional stomping grounds of country and folk are still traversed. Whether it is the honky tonk country of ‘Lonesome Angel’ or the finger picked acoustic led ‘Across the River’ with it’s whiff of Dylan, they have stuck the right balance between slow and upbeat, rock and country. The slow burning yet catchy ‘Love Grow Cold’, built around isolated and drawn out guitar wails, mixes these two mindsets, a mighty fine countrified rock number.
“All Across This Land” is a great rock record which sees Blitzen Trapper mix classic rock with their country and folk sensibilities to good effect. A return to a more traditional sound after the country/hip hop hybrid that was previous album “VII”.
Blitzen Trapper – Official Website