1880: Guilt Train
2001 – Southern Records


1880: Ride
2002 – Southern Records

This band has made his first album “Guilt Train” in 2001 but this was not a real Southern Rock album, even if we can listen to some Southern passages from time to time, but main influences are Heavy and Hard Rock (« I just wanna make love to you », « Off », « She wore black »). There also are some country sounds and a slide guitar at the beginning of “Ball and Chain”, just before music becomes harder. “Radio Rodeo” is a hard-rock song, just like “Guilt Train” (speed hard-rock) and “Wicked ways” (fast Southern hard). After that, it becomes better when there are back to their musical roots (this band comes from Tennessee). “Surrender” is the most Southern song of the album with a New Country ambiance. The ultra-rock “Freight Train” has good solos and the heavy rock “Double Shot” makes us stomp our feet. Then comes the surprise, a cover of Randy California’s “I Got A Line On You” (as did Blackfoot on Strikes). This speed and original version is good enough. When we heard that record, we could feel that 1880 tried to collect the maximum of music fans with a heavy music. Years later, other bands such as Hogjaw did the same. One year later, in 2002, 1880 guys did the job again with “Ride” with the same hard-heavy rock recipe on some songs (“Don’t Dial the Devil”, “Ride”). But they are now more mature and play some Southern Rock, their guitar players level allows them to do it. And now it becomes more serious. “Gold” is a Southern hard song with a great final. We do enjoy “Mercy” a hard and melodic ballad, and we get fun with “The Jailbait Bop”, a kind of Rockabily/Rock n’ Roll song very speed that shows how gifted the guitar players are. “Cowboy” is pretty good enough with a mix between a country ballad and heavy rock, and the blues slow “Ain’t No Sunshine” is full of feeling. And the very fast cover of the Allman Brothers Band “One Way Out” is really great with nice guitar parts and a hypnotic drums-bass break. So to conclude, Southern Rock paleontologists will sure enjoy 1880 second album, better than the first one. If they had made a mix of the two albums best songs, we could have a really good album. But could they get success with that kind of record?

Olivier Aubry

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