Randy Forte recently dropped a new album, called Chas Randall. Recorded in Menomonie, WI and Nashville, TN, it blends the flavors of music Forte grew up with, including gospel, blues, folk, pop, country, and the initial stages of the British invasion.
Forte’s previous albums include Wonder Falling Under (2011), Eleven Steps from Where You Are (2102), and The New Romantic (2013).
Chas Randall comprises 11 tracks and features a talented lineup of musicians: Cory Wong, Adam Ollendorff, Adam Beard, Kevin Gastonguay, Scotty Huff, Marcia Ramirez, Johnny Stanton, Tim Lauer, and Gary Burnette.
“Six Beers Away (From Crying Over You)” is a soft country rocker with twangy, drawling guitars. The harmonic backbone of the tune is a sparkling piano, which, along with the upbeat rhythm, gives the music an alluring energy. Forte’s voice is smooth and evocative, tender and slightly sad.
“Living in Yesterday’s Tomorrow” combines country rock with hints of dirty punk-like guitars. “You Don’t Love Me, Like I Love You” blends country rock with surging blues flavors traveling on a compelling rhythm. A scintillating guitar solo provides the tune with frenetic energy reminiscent of Jerry Lee Lewis.
Taking things down a notch or two, “Best Friends” features Forte’s tender tones, as he waxes nostalgic. Although the description is cliché, this is a pretty tune, full of soft, warm colors. “Picnic on the River Kind of Days” showcases grinding blues flavors, with a scrumptiously filthy guitar solo burning with taut tones.
“When the River Swallows Me” might be my favorite song on the album because of creamy background vocal harmonies exuding gospel hues. This release closes out with “Cross the Mississippi,” a bluesy rocker thrumming with dark energy offset by bright vocal harmonies.
With Chas Randall, Randy Forte delivers a strong album of country rock replete with bluesy savors. If you’re into Americana with a kick, Chas Randall is well worth your attention.
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