By Joshua Wallace
The Cadillac Three have returned with their second album of 2020 and this album is a game changer for them. The band has leaned more into the funk side of their sound and dropped any notion of getting played on country radio. There has also been an instrument change as Kelby Ray has dropped the lap steel in favor of bass to give The Cadillac Three’s new sound a proper low end. It’s a sonic shift that in my opinion has created their best album yet. Let’s check out some of these tracks on The Cadillac Three’s fifth album.
The album kicks off with a great guitar riff on “Tabasco & Sweet Tea” before settling into a funky danceable groove that immediately lets you know what you’re in for on this record. Jaren Johnston’s crooning on this track is just the right kind of funky for the vibes here also. “Sweet Southern Spirit” starts off with an old school hip hop drum beat before the guitar kicks in and brings in the funk. This is a great track about the kind of woman that is “on a country boy bucket list”. TC3 name checks Lynyrd Skynyrd here on this track that has a great funky guitar solo that you can get down to.
“Devil’s Lettuce” brings a funky rap spin to a track about getting high on devil’s lettuce. It’s a funky kind of hip hop feel here but you still get the killer guitar riffs that TC3 are bringing all over this record. It reminds me of what ZZ Top did with “I Gotsta Get Paid”, but leaning more into the funky aspect of that kind of track rather than the dirty blues that ZZ Top employed on their song. “Money Ain’t Shit” is another track that brings a killer guitar riff right up front and center with a cool back beat and smooth crooning from Johnston. This track and the next are big indications that The Cadillac Three are not pushing hard for radio friendly songs anymore. The next song is “Turn The Radio On” which is a straight up country radio protest song. It speaks to how hard it is for artists to make it if they don’t get played on country radio. It’s always great to hear an artist in the position of someone like The Cadillac Three acknowledge this. They have had their own struggles with getting played on the radio and air it out here.
The Cadillac Three have created what I consider to be their best album yet with Tabasco & Sweet Tea. If you haven’t been a fan or have been on the fence about them, I highly suggest giving this record a listen as it is a different style for them. They have dropped any pretense of making music to get played on country radio and just went to make the funky country record they wanted to. It’s a sound that just works for them and I hope this is what we get from TC3 going forward. Tabasco & Sweet Tea is out everywhere as of October 23rd, 2020. As a special note, digital copies are $3.99 for a limited time on the band’s website.
Favorite Tracks : Tabasco & Sweet Tea, Sweet Southern Spirit, Devil’s Lettuce, Money Ain’t Shit, Turn The Radio On, Sabbath On Cornbread
The Cadillac Three – Tabasco & Sweet Tea (2020)
- Tabasco & Sweet Tea
- Stop That Girl
- Head Over Wheels
- Sweet Southern Spirit
- Road Soda
- Devil’s Lettuce
- Money Ain’t Shit
- Turn The Radio On
- Sabbath On Cornbread