Drew Emmitt made a name for himself with Leftover Salmon, but as a solo artist, he has to carry the weight of an album himself, which isn't an easy task, as he discovers on Freedom Ride. He can play, sing, and write competently, but without a great deal of individuality -- it's a telling point that the most memorable song on the album is a cover of Dylan's "Tangled Up in Blue," which makes the rest of the work seem very pale and anemic. It probably doesn't help that Emmitt tends to favor a bouncy tempo, which is fine for foot-tapping, but not so hot for introspection and memory. He gets some strong backup from the John Cowan Band, but the bottom line is that this record is, at best, an average thing.
AllMusic Review by Chris Nickson