Former Young Antiques frontman and chief songwriter, Blake Rainey, recently released a proper collection of savvy country-esque, rockin’ rollers with His Demons. The native Georgia boy has been steeped in punky power pop and anthemic yet sugary rock’n’roll for decades with his former outfit but the latest offering Helicopter Rose is a bit of an antithesis…again — a rousing example of his deeply-rooted love for country music, the southern vernacular, and a pinch of twang. We all need a little twang, its good medicine for the soul. A bit early by way of past Demons record’s release schedules, with their debut The Dangerous Summer in 2007 and Love Don’t Cross Me a scant 7 years later, it’s nice to see a new long-player a mere few years since.
That said, “Losing My Way” is a bouncy, buoyant number. From an opening chordal strum that immediately set my mind to the opening lick and backbeat of Waylon Jennings’ quintessential “Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way” (perfect timing as today marks 15 years since Ol’ Hoss left us here on Earth), the driving rhythm and killer bee back beat sets tonal commodities for Rainey to deliver the verbal goods. Hell everyone needs a good upbeat ditty about being on the right path and possibly needing just a smidgen of validation to that end, especially on a Monday morning. The song emits positivity in melody where the lyrical content is everything but, that is art, my friends. There is no new invention of the wheel here, perhaps Rainey and His Demons are just that much better at spinning it down the road. See for yourselves…
“The record deals with this constant struggle to be rescued from something, whether it be addiction, bad love—or being in the military and being captured by enemy forces.” bolsters Rainey in the album's biography, “I’ve always been drawn to people who write songs that are very unique,” Rainey adds. “It takes a talent, or at least an attention to detail, to write lines that aren’t just like ‘Hey baby baby baby.’ You want to try and spin a story that you haven’t heard before. Or maybe you’ve heard it before, but there are interesting new twists in the song that make it fresh.”
Blake and Demons, please feel free to twist away, but keep some Southern grease on it. Just like I like it….