MusicRecord Reviews

Holy Liars

Critics of modern country music (and really, pop and rock, too) often lament the formulaic nature of songwriting which makes the tracks so predictable. Upon first listen, many tracks on Holy Liars’ most recent album, Heat Lightning, seem contrived to fit the mold shaped by Nashville suits, a crime against Athenian ears. While the catchy lyrics, twangy accent and instrumentation of Heat Lightning prove that Holy Liars are aware of the necessary ingredients in this formula, a closer listen makes it apparent that this Southern rock band has no fear of forcing the boundaries to incorporate a view of the more illicit side of country life. Even better, this perspective seems genuine. Thanks to anthemic, heavily rock-infused tracks, it is impossible not to picture members of this band “passin’ a bottle in the afternoon/ passin’ joints in your Suburu,†habits that highlight “the way it was at home†in the song “Kick in the Pants.â€

Listening to this album makes you want to rip off the sleeves of your Waylon Jennings t-shirt, cut off the legs of your Goodwill jeans, light up a Marlboro, and drink Budweiser on the tailgate of a truck you stole to peddle drugs. Holy Liars give a well-deserved double middle-finger salute to the bubble gum country songs being churned out some 300 miles northwest of Athens.