Country music is at a bit of a crossroads these days. You have the CMA iteration and the purists who complain it’s too pop, you have “Accidental Racist” and that whole conversation, you have Taylor Swift and whatever genre-lines she’s crossing, and you have singer-songwriters and Americana still tangentially related to the label.
But then you have the honky-tonk variety country, the kind of music that no one, no where will argue is anything but country. And in the honky-tonk world of southern California (and now, Texas), Mike Stinson is king.
His latest album, Hell and Half of Georgia, covers your classic country bases – loyalty (“Died and Gone to Houston”), money struggles (“Box I Take To Work”), heartbreak (“This Year”), general life problems (“Late for My Funeral”) – and with the help of R.S. Fields, ups the roadhouse rock ante while prescribing a liberal dose of the “Texas treatment.”
Stream the album in it it’s entirety below.