Scott H Biram “The Bad Testament”
This is Scott H Biram’s 10th release but, we’re ashamed to say, it’s the first that we have heard. Given it’s being released on the excellent Bloodshot records label and it’s been described as being “all about sin and redemption, hard-grinding lost love, blues and deep, dark Americana” it certainly appeals to us.
Now, we’re not really country fans but there is definitely a ‘country’ feel to many of the tracks on here. BUT, before you start running away, we’re not talking barn dances and line dancing! Songs like “Set Me Free”, “Long Old Time” and “Swift Driftin'” are the kind of hard luck tales that are aimed to get you drinking rather than synchronised dancing! Many of the songs would feel at home on the soundtrack to Sons Of Anarchy. “Righteous Ways” would accompany an emotional or gritty moment, whilst “Hit The River” or “Pressin’ On” would soundtrack a bar fight.
We can certainly relate to the drinking blues of “Red Wine”, a song to drown your sorrows to. Indeed, together with songs like “Crippled and Crazy”, there are plenty of numbers that feel like they are meant to be listened to whilst cradling a bottle of bourbon.
This isn’t simply a country/americana album though, there is a lot more shade and light to it than that. For example, you get an almost Spanish feel to the guitar on “Still Around” and “Train Wrecker” has a punk rock aggression to it. Then you’ll be preaching like a good one as you sing along to the gospel sound of “True Religion”.
The great thing about this album is that it just transports you to another place. It brings images of dusty front porches or alternatively spit and sawdust bars. It’s a sound that makes you want to be an outlaw, which is pretty rock n roll in our books!