Album Review: Bo Phillips Band "Dirt Road"

The members of the Bo Phillips Band are students of Red Dirt music who hail from Stillwater, Oklahoma. However, Bo Phillips was born in Houston, and his Texas roots shine through with his band's terrific new album titled "Dirt Road."
Unpaved roads are usually kind of bumpy and unpredictable, but the Bo Phillips Band's "Dirt Road" is filled with heartfelt ballads and rockin' Texas country. The album begins with the soulful "Never." This song has a memorable melody and winning lyrics. The aptly titled "Perfect Girl" is equally pleasing. This radio single is the kind of country song that will make cowgirls dance the night away.

The bluesy "Cornfed" provides worthy guitar performances, but the album really hits its stride with the title track "Dirt Road." This cut could and should find its place on the country chart. It's a pleasing mix of Texas country with mainstream sensibilities and a superb vocal performance by Bo Phillips. In addition, Chris Booth (bass), Nick Tate (lead guitar) and Chris Hempfling (drums & harmony vocals) deserve special attention, because their hard work shines through on every song.

"Tip Jar" gives a shout-out to hard working service people, and it's an unlikely anthem that is inexplicably catchy. But the most fun cut on the album is the bluegrass-infused "Hitchhiker." Bo Phillips channels a young George Strait in this hard-pumping song that causes uncontrollable toe-tapping. "What Do They Know" should also be a concert favorite.

The best track on "Dirt Road" is "Peace On Earth." The lyrics tug at the soul, and the chorus utilizes every element necessary for a successful country song. "Peace On Earth" deserves to be a Number 1 chart hit for the Bo Phillips Band, and radio program directors should take notice.

The members of the Bo Phillips Band love women, and the songs "Love Like That," "More To Me" and "Love Me Tonight" show a sentimental side of the band. The most unique track is saved for last. At over ten minutes in length "Friends Like You / Downtown" seems to be a thank-you note to the friends and family who have supported the band members over the years.

Clocking in at just under an hour, the Bo Phillips Band's "Dirt Road" is an album that shows hundreds of hours of sweat and tears. But it is a major success and might go down as a classic recording of Texas Music. Indeed, the dirt roads of Stillwater have the well worn tire tracks of the Bo Phillips Band. Thankfully, they left the rest of the country some great music tracks, too.