Let’s start with a little introduction. This is Rob Baird’s third album. He started with ‘Blue Eyed Angels’ in 2010 and followed this up with ‘I Swear It’s The Truth’ in 2012. He is based in Austin, Texas and has released his third album ‘Wrong Side Of The River’ on the Hard Luck Recording Company label, whose name may be a hard sell when attracting new business!
In a month when we have new music from Keith Urban, Jennifer Nettles, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Dierks Bentley it would be easy to overlook this album.
To do so would be a travesty. This is an album that has to be heard. We often ask artists to describe their sound. Baird has previously stated that “It’s honest country-rock with maybe some sprinkling of folk music”.
He was based in Austin for the earlier albums but relocated to Nashville for musical and song writing inspiration. He remained there for a year before moving back to Texas to record ‘Wrong Side Of The River’.
It would be easy to use the Mississippi River as the metaphor for the title song but we suspect that this would be too simplistic. This album is more concerned with someone who has been chasing his dreams in the wrong places, finding redemption and moving on.
We have 10 tracks that range from soul searching ballads to out and out rockers but in between we are treated to a smattering of blues influences and traditional country.
‘Mercy Me’, an up-beat rocker with sumptuous pedal steel backing and a great chorus is one of many stand outs. As are the final two tracks ‘When I Go’ and ‘Cowboy Cliché’. Two songs that are seldom bettered.
We have included below the 3-song trilogy video that features songs from the album ‘Ain’t Nobody Got A Hold On Me’, ‘Wrong Side Of The River’ and ‘Horses’.
This was produced by veteran director Matt Bizer and features three characters in three stories and three places. It also features 3 songs that form the basis of this very impressive new collection from an artist that is currently relatively unknown in the UK.