Bulletproof

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Wie auf ist in den letzten Jahren der Name "Reckless Kelly" gefallen, wenn es darum ging, eine neue Scheibe im Alt Country/Rootsrock/No Depression-Genre zu beschreiben und Vergleiche mit anderen Künstlern oder Bands zu ziehen. Reckless Kelly waren immer dabei, nicht nur, weil sie sich in den vergangenen 10 Jahren seit ihrem Debütalbum "Millican" immer weiter nach vorne gespielt haben, sondern weil ihr Stil so prägnant für diese Art von Musik wurde, dass man an ihnen nicht mehr vorbei kam. Nach 2 Studioalben und einem Live-Set auf dem renommierten Sugar Hill-Label hat das Quintett aus Austin, Texas nun (wie so viele andere populäre Acts) beim Yep Roc-Label angedockt und bringen zum Start ihr mittlerweile 4. Studioalbum "Bulletproof" mit. Ein sehr ungewöhnliches Coverartwork zeigt den australischen Outlaw Ned Kelly in seiner Rüstung vor der entscheidenden Schießerei mit der Polizei, und wer über das Cover auf die Musik von Reckless Kelly schließt, liegt bei "Bulletproof" nicht mal so falsch. Denn verglichen mit den Vorgängern wie "Wicked Twisted Road" oder "Under The Table & Above The Sun" ist das neueste Werk extrem knackig, fesch, flott und deftig geworden - aus dem Smart Guy Willy Braun ist ein richtiger Rocker geworden, der ja auch von Reckless Kelly behauptet, der Roots Music der Band sei eher wie eine Rockband mit einer Fiddle als eine Country Band, die rockt. Und das belegt er und seine 4 Mitstreiter auf den ersten 4 Stücken überdeutlich. Vor allem der Opener "Ragged As The Road" treibt mächtig nach vorne mit seinen rollenden und stampfenden Gitarren, dem "You Don't Have To Stay Forever", "Love In Her Eyes" und "Passin' Through" in nichts nachstehen. Voll auf die 12 gelingen auch der Titelsong, das den Irak-Soldaten gewidmete "American Blood" oder "Wandering Eye". Wo sind denn bloß die süßen Balladen mit den harmonietrunkenen Refrains geblieben, werden sich so manche fragen? Keine Bange, sie gibt es auch, wenn auch nur ganz vereinzelt. Aber sie fügen sich hervorragend in die Red Dirt Country Rocker ein und stärken nach 50 Minuten und 14 Songs den Eindruck, mit "Bulletproof" nicht nur das rockigste, sondern auch das modernste und beste Reckless Kelly-Album gehört zu haben. Die Repeat-Taste ist nicht weit…




Reckless Kelly is back on the rock n' roll stage with Bulletproof, their most ambitious and venomous album to date. Rollicking guitars and a relentlessly aggressive rhythm section pound out political statements alongside epic road anthems and ragged love songs. As always, Reckless brings ist indomitable Texas spirit to the new album, resulting in what promises to be the band's most immediate offering of their career. Recorded at Willie Nelson's legendary Pedernales Studios in Lake Travis, Texas, Bulletproof is a call to arms, an opening salvo in Reckless Kelly's campaign to spread the nearly religious dedication of ist Texas followers to fans all across the U.S. of A.

The album art on Reckless Kelly's new release is a semi-faithful rendition of the homemade armor Australian outlaw and band namesake Ned "Reckless" Kelly wore during his final police shootout. But don't assume that imagery and album title represent the Austin-based band's propensity for shoot-'em-ups, horse-thievin' or similarly dangerous behavior; their badass streak is manifested mainly in their fiercely incredible ability to rock out, and their "outlaw" credentials stretch about as far as their appreciation for outlaw country.
If anything, founding brothers Willy and Cody Braun would prefer to do away with bloodshed. One of the most powerful tunes on Bulletproof is "American Blood," a pointed indictment of the war in Iraq. Like Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A.," it's a real mover. But unlike that often-misunderstood anti-war anthem, there's no misconstruing these lyrics; they're a "Fortunate Son"-style diatribe against leaders who sacrifice patriotic young soldiers for all the wrong reasons.
"I've never been a very political guy. I'm just a songwriter trying to tell a story and attempting to shed light on the cold hard truth that not everything about this war makes sense," says lead singer/songwriter/guitarist Willy Braun. "Whether you are for the war or against it, I think we can all agree that the troops deserve absolute support and respect for the job they are doing, and 'American Blood' is a tribute to the sacrifices made by the men and women in uniform and their families."
"God Forsaken Town," co-written with friend and musical influence Robert Earl Keen, similarly addresses the suffering citizens of New Orleans. But not all of Bulletproof contains such serious subject matter. This self-produced disc, the follow-up to their acclaimed 2006 live double CD/DVD, Reckless Kelly Was Here, is clearly the creation of five guys who love to crank it up and have a good time. In fact, Willy prefers to describe their genre-straddling roots music as "more like a rock band with a fiddle" than a country band that rocks.
Take the energetic, grabby first single, "Ragged as the Road." Ist harmony-dressed melody is fueled by guitars as propulsive as the locomotives referenced in the lyrics. "A Guy Like Me," which could easily be the next single, starts with a bass run and drumsticks clicking off an insistent rhythm, then quickly snags listeners with the hook of Willy's demanding question, "Why don'cha wanna fall in love with a guy like me?"
As for that fiddle, it's supplied by Cody, who also handles mandolin, harmonica and vocals. He's joined by David Abeyta on lead guitar, Jimmy McFeeley on bass and Jay Nazz on drums. They throw in plenty of other instruments, too, contributed by guest luminaries including Lloyd Maines (pedal steel), Ephraim Owens (horn), Brian Standefer (cello) and Michael Ramos (B3, piano, Wurlitzer, pump organ).

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Bulletproof
RECKLESS KELLY
Bulletproof
CD
YEP CD 2164
€ 17.90



1. Ragged As The Road
2. You Don't Have To Stay Forever
3. Love In Her Eyes
4. Passin' Through
5. Never Had A Chance
6. One False Move
7. A Guy Like Me
8. American Blood
9. How Was California?
10. Mirage
11. Don't Say Goodbye
12. God Forsaken Town
13. Wandering Eye
14. Bulletproof