Reckless Kelly (from the album Sunset Motel)
Heroes are generally the people that stay standing, humans who ignore voices, real and imagined, and listen only what they hear in their head and hearts. Reckless Kelly have never walked a line in their music. The Austin, Texas-based band have defined the middle ground between Rock’n’Roll and Country by championing a sound that became their own brand. Cody Braun (fiddle, mandolin, vocals, harmonica) gave an idea of influence and intention, sharing that ‘we came along in that second wave of the movement. Son Volt’s album Trace had a major effect on us. People like Joe Ely, Ray Kennedy and Robert Earl Keen were always big supporters. Our goal was to make music that had a country vibe but a solid rock edge’. Sunset Motel is the latest Reckless Kelly release, the title rolling on rhythms of waves lapping against a desolate beach as the album says a thank you in a kiss off song (“Sad Songs About You”), provides a lesson in geography and social studies (“Volcano”), and drifts in the open air of a Folk campfire tune (“Under Lucky Stars”).
The brothers Braun, Willie and Cody, along with drummer Jay Nazz, have guided Reckless Kelly over the course of two decades. The Brauns grew up Idaho, touring the country in a musical family traveling band (Muzzie Braun and the boys), relocating to Bend, Oregon to form Reckless Kelly before heading to Austin to set up home base. Sunset Motel dials in a track to light up the dashboard as “Radio” stomps in with the swagger of songs from “Johnny B. Goode” through “Jukebox Hero” and “Guitar Town”. Reckless Kelly crown “The Champ” with the glitter of rock’n’roll jangle, tenderly touch “One More One Last Time” with hope, lasso “Buckaroo” with jagged power chords, demand answers with “How Can You Love Him (when you don’t even like him)”, and question the future in “Forever Today”.