Hughie Thomasson, Billy Jones, and Frank O'Keefe...all members of the legendary Southern Rock act Outlaws and all sadly now up in that rock 'n' roll party in the sky. Yet, here we are in 2012 and the band soldiers on, with classic members Henry Paul (vocals/guitar) and Monte Yoho (drums) picking up the mantle and bringing new material to their legions of fans. Rounding out the line-up are guitarists Billy Crain & Chris Anderson, bassist Randy Threat, and keyboard player Dave Robbins.While some may scoff at the idea of this line-up calling themselves the Outlaws without Thomasson and wish that they simply go back to being the Henry Paul Band (a fine outfit for many years), after listening to It's About Pride there's no denying that the music is very much in the style of classic Outlaws. So, expect plenty of Southern Fried boogie featuring memorable melodies and scorching guitar playing.
As far as the Outlaws were always concerned, it was always about the catchy, countrified hooks and the blistering rock guitar solos and jams, and this album has plenty of both. Paul's voice sounds better than ever, and the duo of Crain & Anderson lay down some smoldering lead work on tunes like the Molly Hatchet sounding "Born to Be Bad" and the heavy rocking opener "Tomorrow's Another Night". The band's ability to craft catchy pop songs and house them in Southern friend arrangements remains, evident by the addicting, epic title track (sure to be this albums "Green Grass and High Tides" with its lengthy guitar jam) and the haunting "Last Ghost Town", the latter featuring some great vocals from Paul. Those tasty dual harmony electric guitar lines & lush acoustic permeate the hook laden "The Flame", and if you want scorching Southern Rock, look no further than "Trail of Tears" for some serious guitar firepower. "Right Where I Belong" is vintage Outlaws, again with more tasty harmony guitars, and the slow build of "Trouble Rides a Fast Horse" allows for plenty of eventual virtuoso guitar solos. The band even throws in a newly recorded version of the old Henry Paul Band classic "So Long", which might not have been the best thing to do here, but it's a great tune and this new version is stellar.
So, whether you accept It's About Pride as being an Outlaws album or not is up to you, but there's no denying that it's a kick ass Southern Rock record, and that in the end is just the way it is. I'm on board.
1. Tomorrow's Another Night 4:18
2. Hidin' Out In Tennessee 4:06
3. It's About Pride 7:09
4. Born To Be Bad 5:18
5. Last Ghost Town 3:32
6. Nothin' Main About Main Street 5:34
7. The Flame 4:28
8. Trail Of Tears 3:46
9. Right Where I Belong 4:14
10. Alex's Song 3:37
11. Trouble Rides A Fast Horse 5:20
12. So Long 5:52