Not everything you listen to has to be boundary pushing, high art or heavy and extreme, sometimes you want something that’s simply enjoyable, catchy, well done and all with a good sense of humour and that’s where The Bourbon Preachers come in.
The German dark/alt country/folk meets goth rock group made up of five brothers give us an album with an infectious energy, catchy choruses and solid musicianship. This is the type of music that you can listen to in any mood or situation, it’s got enough spunk and edge to pack a punch but its accessible and easily enjoyable. I can also see it translating extremely well in a live setting. The band have found a perfect middle ground between drinking songs, country and alternative/goth rock, taking some of the best elements from each. The music is kept simple, which works in its favour, allowing the listener to focus on the melodies, vocals and lyrics. The tracks have a sort of anthemic quality that allows the listener to joyously sing along with each rousing tune, something I imagine works well in smaller venues and bar settings, as well as on smaller festival circuits.
You’ll find country influenced guitar segments and melodies with bluesy undertones accompanied by deep and commanding vocals that sit far closer to gothic rock/post-punk. Yet despite the differences between these two worlds, the band manage to marry them seamlessly, creating a sound that isn’t quite either. The one thing that some may find issue with is the similarities between tracks, as the album tends to bleed together a little when listened to in full in a single sitting. However, I feel like with this type of music that is understandable and personally I don’t see it as an issue.
As far as favourite tracks go, I would have to go with Boozeday Alcoholypse, which is probably the most iconic track on the album and most likely a crowd pleaser live. I also really enjoyed the second to last track, Farewell, which takes on a bit more of a bluesy country atmosphere and energy, also running the second longest of any song on the album at 4:50. Deceiver of light is another winning track, leaning more into the goth rock side of the band, but still having those country undertones. I also have to give praise to The Royal Barber Club for having such a catchy chorus and some fantastic bluesy country guitar work. I also appreciate the band’s willingness to cover BangBang, a track that they breath new life into and one that holds a lot of childhood n
Overall I feel as if the album is an enjoyable listen that one should approach with a spirit of fun in mind. The band aren’t re-inventing the wheel here but who says that they have to, sometimes things can just be enjoyable in order to be worth our time. So, play this one loud, pound a few rounds of Bourbon and have a good time with some friends.
Listen to the album: