Hometown News

Wheels

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AllMusic Review by

Ron Kingery and Scott Whitehead, known as the duo Hometown News, are not brothers, but they could pass for brothers with their incredibly synchronized two-part harmony. In fact, Kingery and Whitehead only met in 1996, six years prior to the release of their debut album, Wheels. Naturally, a two-man harmony act immediately calls to mind greats such as the Bellamy Brothers, Simon & Garfunkel, and countless others, but make no mistake: Hometown News is no knock-off. These two songwriters turned artists turned producers have realized a sound they can call their own. The slice-of-life subject matter on Wheels offers wide appeal. The working men and women of the world will appreciate "Revitalize," a song about being stuck in the rut of the 40-plus-hour week. The domestic aspect of life is the focus of "Minivan," a fond farewell to the impulsiveness of your twenties and an enthusiastic embrace of your responsible thirties. Not forgotten are youth and seniority in the album's title cut, which points out that you are introduced to this world on the wheels of a stroller and often leave it on the wheels of a wheelchair. One of the most substantial debut albums of its day, "Wheels" truly offers something for everyone. Its expert songwriting, masterful harmony, and variety are to be commended.

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