Album Review: Will Hoge – Never Give In
From the opening chords of album opener, “A Different Man,” you know that Will Hoge’s latest release, Never Give In, is going to take you on a heartfelt, full blast trip.
Featuring 11 original songs, and not a dud in the bunch, this is Hoge’s strongest release to date. Of course you have the first release(and actually not on the original cut) “Strong” which not only tells the story of the ‘working man,’ but in the relentless pursuit in doing what is right.
The strongest song of the bunch “Next Time Around,” brought about a great comment from Will when I chatted with him last month; “There is a fortunate thing and an unfortunate thing when it came to writing the songs on this record and the two weeks leading up to recording them. “This Time Around” I wrote with Dylan Altman who I’ve written with quite a bit. We’ve been in bands together, and writing with him isn’t like a co-write where you go in trying to write a hit song, Dylan and I get together to write ‘a song.’ With “This Time Around,” I told Dylan I wanted to write something simple as I had half the song written already. I had just gotten the Ray Charles box-set The Complete Country & Western Recordings. Dylan being from Jersey hadn’t a clue what country music was and me being from Nashville realized that an Otis Redding song and a Hank Williams song are the same song other than melody or chord progression. Dylan’s dad had this piano which we used on this song and it was just out of tune enough to be funky and threw the song down in short order and it’s one of my favorites.”
With searing lyrics like, never more than a picture on the wall/our backdoor was a turning page, from “Home Is Where The Heart Breaks,” or the only other girl in his whole world is the queen of hearts, from “Daddy Was A Gamblin’ Man.” Hoge is not only ‘strong’ but stellar on what will be the Album of late 2013 and all of 2014.