Following the sensational album Greenbah, Billy Roberts and the Rough Riders storm back into our lives with the perfect sort of track to see you well and truly into weekend mode.
HillBilly Blues is a song offers a quickly familiar melody and a string of images and ideas that add an additional touch of infectiousness to an already uplifting and musically satisfying piece of entertainment. In addition to the simplicity of that melody, the spaces between vocal moments are scattered with snippets of instrumental character and flair, bringing more and more colour and brightness to the scene and building this up way higher than a simple Americana performance might classically stand.
Having reveled in the energy of the last album, it’s a pleasure to hear a fresh recording from Billy Roberts and the Rough Riders – there’s something excitingly new yet softly comforting about his leading voice and the carefree nature of the writing. This song is particularly honest from the offset, the story-line and the connection between that and the creative behind it – the one who experienced it all first hand – is consistently clear. You hang on every word and find yourself moving back and forth between simply observing and actually placing yourself within the concept and the references. The simple, hypnotic vocal rhythm has the effect of driving this feeling further and further into your consciousness.
During the latter half of the track there’s a fairly sudden curse word that snaps you back to reality a little, an effective touch that again brings a dash of something unexpected to a seemingly smooth moving piece of music. The only thing that would potentially top playing this at full volume as you dive deeper into Friday night would be a live show from Billy Roberts and the Rough Riders. Having said that, there’s a definite level of grit and realness to this rrecoding that makes it as close a contender as possible.
Stream the track on Spotify.