Old Stone Gang

The Textones

Blue Elan Records, 2018


REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


It's been 30+ years since the last album from The Textones, but the reassembled outfit started kicking around new tunes in 2012 with the Cedar Creek lineup. Fully ready to resurrect their self-described “hard rockin' The-Who-Meets-The Stones kind of band with a little Byrds or Beatles jangle thrown in,” this third album follows closely to the greatness The Textones achieved in the '80s. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The record gets out to a classic start with the bluesy rocker “Downhearted Town,” where a big chorus and horns make this a triumphant return for the band. “Bared My Soul” follows and brings the scene down to an emotive and soulful restrained place before the title track “Old Stone Gang” packs a punch with a fun, upbeat, organ-fueled rocker.

The middle of the album continues the formula with the sweet Americana and warm pedal steel  of “20 Miles South Of Wrong,” which draws comparisons to Springsteen, and the lo-fi, raw recording of “One Half Rock” that breaks into a piano rocker with plenty of horns and buzzing guitars. “All That Wasted Time” resides here and is one of the best tracks, as it brings a muscular and lush effort of sparkling and timeless roots rock.

The second half of the album has the band further spreading their wings with the playful jazz influences of “Midnight Roundabout,” and “Carly Jo” brings accordions and a dulcimer to the party. On “Ride On,” Carla Olson's expressive vocals take a backseat to deep male singing, which doesn't detract from the poise of the album at all.

However, The Textones is at their best with the acoustic strumming of “Come Stay The Night,” which embodies all that we love about the band: melody, elegance, spirited rock 'n' roll, and moving storytelling.

Old Stone Gang picks up right where the band left off three decades ago, and I don't see how anyone could have a problem with that.

Rating: A

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2018 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Blue Elan Records, and is used for informational purposes only.