By Joshua Wallace
It’s not often when I hear a new album in January that makes me think it’s an album of the year contender, and even less often when that album is from a new artist. You might be familiar with Joshua Ray Walker as he has already opened for names such as Colter Wall, American Aquarium and James Hand. He’s out of Dallas, TX and frequently plays shows in that region. If you’re not familiar with Joshua Ray Walker, prepare to hear his name often as this is a record that will be on many favorite album lists. At the age of 28, Joshua Ray has vocal control and a songwriting ability to match those twice his age.
The album kicks off with a monster of a track called “Canyon”. Joshua Ray blows you away with his lyrics right from the start. “I’m a big big man, not just in size or in stature, in terms of space that can’t be filled, I’m a bottomless Cayon without a drop to spill”. Such emotion is in these lyrics and I love the tune behind this one as well. It has some amazing pedal steel work. Another great tune on this album is “Lot Lizard”. The highlight of this one is the yodeling, it gets me every time.
Another favorite track is “Burn It”. This one changes things up a bit and goes for a bluesy electric feel. Joshua nails it even though it’s not his typical style proving he has some strong vocal chops. “Keep” is a great sad bastard country song about the sorrow of a man who is trying to kill himself because his woman left him. Van Darien provides vocals for the other side of this relationship on this can’t miss track. “Love Songs” is a Tejano inspired track about why Joshua doesn’t write love songs. It’s another great highlight that shows the diversity of the album. Finally, “Last Call” ends the album with a track about the woman you hook up with at the end of the night. The kind of one time hookup that neither party parts ways happy about.
Joshua Ray Walker has a way with lyrics, whether it’s a sad bastard country song or an ode to truck stop prostitutes. I’m really liking what I’m hearing on this album and I can’t wait to hear more from this Dallas, TX singer. I can assure you, this album has earned a spot on my 2019 Top 50 Albums of the Year. The album is out tomorrow (01/25/2019) on State Fair Records and is available everywhere good music is sold.
Favorite Tracks : Canyon, Trouble, Lot Lizard, Burn It, Keep, Love Songs, Last Call
Joshua Ray Walker – Wish You Were Here (2019)
- Working Girl
- Pale Hands
- Lot Lizard
- Burn It
- Love Songs
- Last Call