Shallow Water Blackout

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Although the material is less consistent than their previous effort Tales of a Brown Dragon, Shallow Water Blackout is another healthy helping of the band's country-fed alternative. Longtime Dwight Yoakam engineer Dusty Wakeman produced the album, giving the songs a more authentic country kick. Although humor is a prominent ingredient in Dieselhed's music, they're definitely not an obvious joke band (like past goofy country-rockers the Kentucky Headhunters). On first listen, "Fog It Up" sounds dead serious, but upon closer inspection, the song tells the tale of someone dreaming about a plane crash mid-flight, and wakes up at the end by a stewardess assuring him that they've landed safely and it's time to get off. With that said, the group does at times get downright silly, but with a sense of originality. The more straight-ahead compositions are the album's best, though -- the sad tale of "Betty," the sloppy riff-rock of "Carving Soap." The band doesn't seem to want to be tagged as either lighthearted or serious country, which is fine as long as they keep putting out fine records like Shallow Water Blackout.

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