I mentioned a few days ago that I loved the song Christian Kane did for Angel, "L.A. Song." On the strength of that track, I visited the website for Christian's band, Kane and listened to the sample cuts, and I liked them as well, so I popped over to MxMerch and bought Kane's CD.
Not a bad series of moves by yours truly. I'm very much enjoying the record.
iTunes classifies Kane as country, but I'd put it more in the realm of rockabilly or southern rock--it's driven mostly by guitar and Christian's vocals, with welcome additions of fiddle, lap steel, mandolin, and dobro by Craig Eastman. Lyrically, the songs deal with love lost and found, southern geography (references to Carolina, Dallas, Mexico, I-35, and Oklahoma), drinking, Vietnam, God, dirt roads, neon signs, and many of the usual tropes of good old-fashioned country songs (with extra points for a reference to David Allen Coe that would make my mama proud). Which isn't to say it's all rote--there are moments of lyrical brilliance, and enough references and visuals to keep me interested.
To my ear, the best track on the album is the opener, "Sweet Carolina Rain," which is lyrically interesting ("Preacher man's daughter said I was goin' to hell/And I'm a little superstitious now/Driving down the road going a hundred and ten/Braggin' to your mama's little boy he's a man"), with a fantastic reference to Huck Finn, a sing-along chorus, and a fun fiddle line. I'm also a little bit enamored with the closing track, "Oklahoma State of Mind," which reminds me (in a positive way) of the fun and wild feel of Garth Brooks' "Ain't Goin' Down 'Til the Sun Comes Up." On a sadder and more serious note, the heartbreak and self-loathing that comes across in "Don't Come Home" ("I just called to tell you/That I was wrong and you were on my mind./If you want I'll leave you alone right now/'Cause I know why you're saying, why you're saying/Don't come home") is just about enough to break your heart, and Christian's vocal on it is just perfect.
All in all, this is a solid album for anyone who has a particular affection for Christian's voice, or for country/southern rock hybrid style music. Don't, however, buy the album thinking it's going to be like ten tracks of "L.A. Song"--the feel is much different. Be forewarned that you won't find L.A. lawyer Lindsey McDonald on the Kane album--these boys are southern and you can hear it. And that's just fine by me.