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The brand new album from Brooks & Dunn featuring the hit single Proud of the House We Built. Cowboy Town is the much anticipated follow up to Brooks & Dunn's highest selling album in 10 years, Hillbilly Deluxe.
Brooks and Dunn albums often blend powerful, soaring performances with a number of utter throwaways. "American Dreamers," a nostalgic look back, "God Must Be Busy," a powerful musing on present travails, and "Cowgirls Don't Cry," reflecting on life's curve balls, all surpass the utterly predictable "Proud of the House We Built." Likewise, "Tequila"'s driving country boogie trumps fluff like "Cowboy Town" and "Drop in the Bucket." While ostensibly honoring two departed icons (along with Waylon Jennings and Hank Williams Sr.), "Johnny Cash Junkie (Buck Owens Freak)" seems mainly conceived to invoke those hallowed names alongside those of the Rolling Stones, Willie Nelson, and CMT. Far stronger is "The Ballad of Jerry Jeff Walker," a knowing celebration of the Texas legend (who does a cameo) and the '70s Austin country-rock scene he dominated. The edgy, inspired arrangement of the Darrell Brown/Radney Foster tune "Drunk on Love" churns and rocks, yet never once does the arrangement overwhelm the witty lyrics. In the end, the same question remains: How can an act so capable of greatness deliver such uneven albums? --Rich Kienzle
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