With country music heading further and further down the "pop" side of the country/pop spectrum, fans who were reared on neo-traditionalist artists like Alan Jackson, George Strait or even Brad Paisley should find Dean Brody's self-titled debut album for Broken Bow Records to their liking. Brody, the singer/songwriter behind the patriotic tale of brotherly love ("Brothers"), showcases a solid set of songs that are never mistaken for anything but country music and they're certainly in the Brad Paisley traditionalist mode, minus the goofy, irreverent side.
"Undone" is a fiddle and guitar laced up-tempo number about how Dean's lovely lady makes him feel while "Dirt Road Scholar" is one of the most authentic and believable "I'm from the country" songs you're likely to hear and while I'm a bit tired of the theme, it's easy to listen to them when they come off with authenticity like this (something even Justin Moore's "Small Town USA" has). Like Brad Paisley, Brody is an engaging songwriter in the sense that he's able to make analogies that are fresh and new to country yet the song never escapes the thought that it's anything but a country song. Vocally on the track Brody veers from Paisley's sentimental baritone to Dierks Bentley's lilting tenor.
While one could argue that "Brothers" has some cheesy lyrics, it's really hard to see the lyrics that way when you realize that the lyric "I Miss Our Pillow Fights" was written from the POV of a young brother, not from the older 18-20 year old brother. "Cattleman's Gun" is a western song of the same ilk that used to be found on every Garth Brooks album and it's certainly one of the best songs on this record. All in all, "Dean Brody" is a consistent well-crafted album and it may just be the best album that Broken Bow Records has released and that has all to do with the pen of Brody and the steady production of his friend and co-writer Matt Rovey.