With a clatter of percussion and a blast of electric guitar, Cowboy Mouth rips into the band’s 10th album, Go!, with the ferocity of a band that’s been there, done that… and can’t wait to do it all again.
“I’m just a little older, but I ain’t dead yet!” frontman Fred LeBlanc sings during the title track, summing up the album’s “seize the day” message in three short seconds.
Produced by Don Miggs, Go! is one of the band’s most collaborative albums to date, with drummer/singer LeBlanc leaning heavily on his three bandmates — bassist Casandra Faulconer, guitarist Matt Jones, and co-founding guitarist John Thomas Griffith — to create something that reaches far beyond the band’s trademarked sound. It’s a wide-ranging mix of electric blues, rockabilly, punky pop and guitar-oriented rock & roll. Or, as LeBlanc puts it, “Go! is a strong collection of songs played by four really great musicians… or three great musicians and a drummer who happens to sing.”
Self-deprecating humor aside, Go! delivers proof that Cowboy Mouth hasn’t lost its bite after two and a half decades of rootsy rock & roll and a never ending string of rowdy concerts. LeBlanc has always prided himself on the band’s strength as a live act, which he sees as the focal point of his career.
“The shows are very celebratory, life-affirming things,” he explains. “I’ve been told a couple times by fans that a Cowboy Mouth show is like a Southern gospel revival without the religion. I’ve never looked at Cowboy Mouth as a tool for selling albums; instead, I look at an album as a tool for selling the Cowboy Mouth live experience.”
With Go!, the band is selling both. It’s a loud, lively album steeped in the energy of the band’s concerts, anchored by a theme that LeBlanc says is central to every Cowboy Mouth show.
“It’s about the need to escape, and realizing that you don’t have to go outside of yourself to find everything you’re looking for in life,” he explains. “Everything you’re looking for is really on the inside, and it’s up to you to bring it out of yourself. That’s where the real gems are.”