REVIEW: Put Your Dancin’ Shoes on For JP Harris’ “Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing”

Reviews

Anyone who has ever been a hobo would probably have some stories to tell. JP Harris is someone who has lived the hobo life on freight trains, and he has a lot of stories to tell. Even if they’re not about trains and being a hobo, JP Harris tells some interesting stories on his new album Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing (Free Dirt Records) produced by Morgan Jahnig (Old Crow Medicine Show).

The album opens with a romp called “JP’s Florida Blues #1.“ This is a song that compares in energy and sound to Sturgill Simpson as Harris sings about wild times “seeking my inspiration with my nose.” The whole song is enough to get you moving but especially the instrumental break which goes heavy on the resonator and pedal steel guitars.
Harris takes the listener through a couple drinking songs as well as a song (“Lady in the Spotlight”) whose mellow vibe and deep, rich vocals bring Kris Kristofferson to mind. “When I Quit Drinking” and especially “I Only Drink Alone” are both perfect for a slow dance with a stranger in a dark honky tonk. With “I Only Drink Alone” it’s easy to imagine a couple moving slowly to Kellen Wenrich’s piano part on an empty dance floor as the evening nears an end.

Considering Harris’s history of travel, it’s not surprising that the album contains a song about traveling. “Hard Road” is an uptempo gem that is perfect for being on the road. Eric Pollard (drums) paces the song with a beat that makes it hard to keep still. Leroy Powell (pedal-steel) especially showcases his skills in the instrumental break.
This is a good album – especially for those who like old-time country sounds that go heavy on the pedal steel. Have your dancing shoes ready when you listen to this album. Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing will be available on October 5. Order your copy at https://www.ilovehonkytonk.com/.

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