Artist: Breaking Southwest
EP: Take a Moment (EP)
Breaking Southwest is a guitarist driven Country-Rock band from Dallas, Texas. Although I’m not crazy about the band name to be honest, Texas is however a very colorful, sunny place and it has its fair share of festive days as well. However this might just be the perfect locale to explore the upbeat, sunny, carefree realm of musical expression. This latest CD from these 3 (Kent Bell, Kyle Gaston, Shannon Ward) delivers all of the above and will reveal all the a-typical conventions of today’s modern country-pop music that so many adore. This creates a solid sonic space for the listener to bask in. Other musicians: )Bryan Meggison, Kerry West, Matt Aslanian, Joslin Dsouza.)
The first track “Breathe” lifts off the ground smoothly and is in itself an impressive kickoff statement to say the least. It’s remarkably easy to listen, and gravitates you right away like a magnet. All songs present a stunning collection of music that slowly runs the gamut and has much to offer insofar as impressive music and captivating vocals from Kent Bell. This makes the listener feel right at home laying on the sun without a care in the world. Musical comparables for me include Rascal Flats, Joe Nichols and Lee Brice. On the other side of the sonic spectrum I Can also hear Sugarland, Craig Morgan, Gary Allen, Chris Cagle and Easton Corbin. One cannot help but admire artists with strong songwriting skills and truthful conviction all the while demonstrating a strong a level of creativity. One senses a growing ambition as this CD advances.
Bell’s appealing voice hit the mark and with soul stimulating lyrics and a hooky vibe provides a very real and powerful source of inspiration. The musicianship is rock steady and the overall production value tows the line. All in all a great set of songs. Speaking of which notable standouts for me include: “You and the Summer”, “Breathe” and “Rubber on this Road” If you want a pleasant rock-steady pop-country-folk staple there’s something on this EP for you. Let me go on record by saying Breaking Southwest is the next Sugarland. Obviously many will fall head over heals over these 3, especially Bell. This is one band that’s set up rather well for mainstream success this year. Some of this plays into strong marketability potential world wide. Some pieces present more modern sounding overtones but despite all this the flavor possess traditional Rock n’ Roll textures with some Americana Pop thrown in. This is really what makes Breaking Southwest so enticing to me personally.
Although it’s not the greatest band name I’ve ever heard – Breaking Southwest possesses an impressive and youthful look and sound. “Take a Moment” grants you rare access to peer into the soul of an artist with a not so tormented soul but rather easy going and positive – from a Dallas, Texas sunny-popish perspective shall we say.
Final Rating: 9/10
Review by Diane Rickson edited by J.J. McCall
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