With Crosstied, the Cruzarz make another entry into the gospel-inflected country genre. Although musically adept and even downright catchy at times (the alternative country "Stay the Same," for example), this is hardly a record like Steve Earle's Jerusalem. On the contrary, it's too explicitly religious and not musically ambitious enough to break out of the constraints of Christian music. That said, devout fans of Christian country will appreciate the levity of a cut like "Dem Lies," the noir-ish, Spaghetti Western moods of "Joppa Glow," and the Southern rock groove of "Otium Sanctum." But Crosstied is unlikely to attract any secular pop music fans; the Cruzarz will have to be content to preach to the choir.
by Charles Spano