By Joshua Wallace
Ward Davis is finally back with his second full length album titled Black Cats and Crows. This is his first full album since 2015’s stellar 15 Years In A Ten Year Town. This record was well worth the wait although I hope it doesn’t take another five years for a third full length Ward Davis. This collection has a bit more of a rock sound to it with plenty of heavy guitars throughout, but it is still firmly a country record and it’s one of the best country records to come out in 2020.
The album kicks off with “Ain’t Gonna Be Today” which is co-written by Kendell Marvel. This song gives you a bit of a rocking feel that sets you up for the rest of the record. “Black Cats and Crows” was the first single from the record. It’s a ballad with a darker tone that was co-written by Cody Jinks and Tennessee Jet. I love the slow build with the Ward on the keys and the solo on this one is awesome. Speaking of amazing solos, none other than Anthrax’s Scott Ian plays on the track “Sound Of Chains” and it’s a heavy rocking country murder ballad. Scott Ian’s playing adds a lot of muscle to this track and it has to be heard to be truly appreciated.
I think Ward Davis has the better version of “Colorado” here. This song is written by Cody Jinks and Ward, and it previously appeared on Jinks Lifers album. This version is smoother and I feel like the emotion of the song carries through a bit more here. It’s a great song either way you listen to it though. Another murder ballad here is “Papa and Mama” which is a great Ray Scott tune. Ward takes Ray Scott’s dark and bluesy number and turns it into more of a gothic country murder ballad. Finally, “Good and Drunk” closes out this record. I’m happy to see this stand out track from 2018’s Asunder EP finally appear on an actual album. It’s a nice closer and fits the overall darker mood of the record.
Ward Davis has turned in a great follow up to 2015’s 15 Years In A Ten Year Town. With these two albums under his belt, Ward Davis has cemented himself as one of the top independent country music acts. I cannot wait to hear some of these songs live sometime very soon. Black Cats and Crows is out everywhere you can listen to music as of November 20th, 2020.
Favorite Tracks : Ain’t Gonna Be Today, Black Cats and Crows, Sounds Of Chains, Get To Work Whiskey, Colorado, Papa and Mama, Lady Down On Love, Good and Drunk
Ward Davis – Black Cats and Crows (2020)
- Ain’t Gonna Be Today
- Black Cats and Crows
- Sounds Of Chains
- Get To Work Whiskey
- Book Of Matches
- Heaven Had A Hand
- Where I Learned To Live
- Papa and Mama
- Lady Down On Love
- Good To Say Goodbye
- Good and Drunk