The Steel Woods – Old News

I have a strong attraction to Southern rock. It started when I was 16 and discovered Second Helping. That album led me down the rabbit hole of The Charlie Daniels Band, The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker Band, 38 Special, et al. It also led to some embarrassing decisions such as sporting a Confederate flag on the front of my car, buying a shirt from a Cedar Bluff, AL truck stop emblazoned with “heritage not hate,” and having a misguided sense of what it means to be a Southerner; I was 16 and dumb. Thankfully, my personal and political beliefs have changed for the better as I have grown up.

One thing that has not changed is my love of Southern rock.

Old News is a healthy mixture of the blues and outlaw country with just enough heaviness in the guitars to form a wonderful Southern rock sound. I am drawn to the lazy-mouthed and thick-accented vocal work that seeps slowly out of the speakers like Karo syrup being poured over pancakes.

This record definitely goes full bore classic country music at times. Especially, during the sad songs and the Merle Haggard cover. But, it always comes back to the rock edge.

This album is like getting two in one. Well, it is like getting one LP and an EP. Old News is a double album and side D is a tribute to recently passed greats. It features covers of songs from Tom Petty, Merle Haggard, The Allman Brothers, and Wayne Mills.

Old News is a record from another time. This album should have been released in 1975 and been followed by a giant world tour of The Steel Woods opening for Skynryd or Marshall Tucker.

My favorite track: Without You

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