As you guys might know, Koe Wetzel’s “Between Two Bottles” was Texas Music Pickers “Most Underrated Single of 2014”. After listening to the new album, “Out on Parole”, it’s safe to say his days of being underrated are rapidly depleting! The album brings tons of energy and excitement and shows the growth and maturity that most artists hope to achieve with their sophomore production. My formula to listening to albums before reviews is pretty simple. I listen to them 3-4 times, then take at least a 48 hour break and come back to it to listen again few more times. This time however, I only made it 24 hours before his tunes we’re blaring in my headphones again.
The record starts off with “Gravedigger” and immediately lets the listener know this isn’t going to be your average Texas music album. The fiddle licks and guitar riffs combine with Wetzel’s smooth, energetic vocals to bring a polished “Texas Rock ‘n’ Roll” sound; which sets the tone for the rest of the album.
“Change My Ways” is the next track on the album and is set to be released to radio soon! We think it’s a great choice for a single, as the song is one you sing along to and the tempo is great for radio. We all wonder if we’ll ever change our ways; will we get better or will we get worse? The message is one we all know – we’ve all been at one point in our lives where we are tired of living in the past and ready to move on. Wetzel does a great job of making the song relatable to his audience. and we expect this one to do really well on the charts!
Wetzel gives us an insight in to heartbreak at its core with “Lonely as it Gets”. Sometimes it feels like we’re giving a relationship our best and to other person it just seems like one big game. We really like the rhythm to the writing and music sets the tone perfectly for the sentiment of confusion and craziness we often feel in that situation.
We were excited to see “Between Two Bottles” get another shot with this new album. It was one of our favorite songs last year and was our “Most Underrated Single of 2014”! We love the energy and catchiness of the tune. It was the best track on the previous EP and we’re glad those that missed out on it the first time, will get another chance to hear it with this album.
“Song I can Drink to” opens up with a hard bluesy harmonica and doesn’t let you come back down until the bridge and then brings it back up for one more round. The most up-tempo song on the record, it does a great job of showing the edge the Konvicts have, and extends the rage of the album. As I said earlier, “Out on Parole” brings an exciting, electric energy to it and here’s a great example! It is truly a song you not only drink to, but one you party to as well!
“Never Leave” is our 3rd favorite track. We love, love, love the honesty in the lyrics and the accuracy of growing up in a small town. Wetzel hits on all the emotions we often feel about our small hometown: we feel it’s a place people get “stuck” in and battle being one of those people. When we go back, it doesn’t seem like anything has changed, as people that were there when you left, are still doing the same thing. I like the perspective of the song and originality on a topic that’s done a lot in country music.
The album ends with “Tacos and Tornadoes” a song about… well I’m not really sure. You’ll have to listen to the album to hear what I mean. Ha.
Wine Glass – If you’re looking for the growth in Koe Wetzle’s songwriting ability here it is. I like the complexity in the writing and the depth of . Once again the energy in the song adds excitement and we love the music on this track. My wife is the pickiest music listener in the world, so usually when I come across a song I really like, I put it to the test by having her listen to it. It passed with flying colors! This is a song that makes you close your eyes when you sing along to it and my personal favorite on the album.
Still All I See is You – This is the slowest song on the album and the most intimate. Wetzel sings introspectively of how hard it is to let somebody go. I think it’s the best written song on the record and the emotions in Wetzel’s voice strike the tone perfectly. I like how the band wasn’t afraid to take a risk with a softer melody and boy did it pay off! It provides a good variety to the album and makes it more complete.
Overall, we’re really excited for what the album should do for Koe Wetzel and the Konvicts. It’s a solid album from start to finish and has a couple of really good radio singles on it! The album shows that Wetzel is only getting better and the future looks bright for these guys! We definitely recommend checking this album out!
Check out “Wine Glass” below!
Music addict, a sucker for heartbreak songs, and avid Houston sports fan! I’am also the Editor-in-Chief of Texas Music Pickers.