The Kody Norris Show, Rhinestone Revival Review
Bluegrass music, with its foundation built on tradition and authenticity, has been undergoing a renaissance in recent years, and Kody Norris and his band, The Kody Norris Show, are leading the charge. Their latest release, Rhinestone Revival, is a love letter to the past and a beacon for the future of Americana and bluegrass music. Rhinestone Revival is a captivating and thrilling blend of the old and new that will entertain, educate, and enlighten.
Rhinestone Revival showcases the band’s distinctive style, combining retro, hillbilly, bluegrass, and rockabilly. The first impression is one of “dern good entertainment,” as Norris himself puts it, with an undeniable undercurrent of North American folk traditions. From the flashy rhinestone suits that harken back to country music’s golden age to the expertly crafted songwriting that draws heavily from the likes of Bill Monroe, Jimmy Martin, and the Stanley Brothers, Rhinestone Revival is at once both a history lesson and a contemporary exploration of Americana music.
Norris is a consummate frontman, providing not just proficient guitar picking but also a commanding presence. His captivating vocals strike a balance between classic bluegrass storytelling and a modern edge that speaks to today’s audiences. Mary Rachel Nalley-Norris, the fiddling “sweetie,” adds her own distinct flavor to the mix, her fiddle and mandolin work serving as the ideal foil to Norris’s guitar.
The album teems with delightful bluegrass tunes, ranging from the toe-tapping energy of “Let All the Girls Know You’re a Cowboy” and “I Call Her Sunshine” to the mournful, atmospheric storytelling in “Petals in the Fall.” The songs evoke the Appalachian spirit; each track is a slice of life steeped in regional history and folklore.
Norris’s own songwriting is on full display in this album too. Tracks like “Fiddler’s Rock” and “Please Tell Me Why” reveal an artist with a deep understanding and respect for his craft. “Baltimore I’m Leaving” offers a heartfelt ode to country living, while “Gotta Get My Baby Back” is an infectiously high-energy number that would get even the most reluctant dancer to tap their foot.
Guest appearances by Darin and Brooke Aldridge, Jason Barie, Tony Creasman, and David Johnson further enrich the album’s texture. Their contributions serve to emphasize the communal nature of bluegrass music, with each artist bringing a unique element to the band’s already expansive sound.
Overall, Rhinestone Revival is an album that seamlessly merges the nostalgic with the progressive. It is steeped in tradition but always feels relevant. Instead, it is a testament to contemporary bluegrass music’s vibrancy and dynamism. Above all, it demonstrates The Kody Norris Show’s dedication to, in Norris’s words, “dern good entertainment.” The band’s energy, creativity, and skilled musicianship ensure that Rhinestone Revival is a listening experience that is as enjoyable as informative. For lovers of Americana music, this album is simply a must-listen. That’s the short of it!
Connect with The Kody Norris Show: Website |
June 2, 2023