It’s easy to look at Trailer Choir and dismiss them as nothing but a gimmicky band but to that is folly. The band is immensely talented and each member brings something to the band. Consisting of chief songwriters Butter, Big Vinny and vocalist Crystal Hoyt, Trailer Choir is an interesting band in that their not your typical band. They built up a big following in the Nashville area and during one of their shows; the one and only Toby Keith witnessed their talent and signed the trio to a record deal for Show Dog-Universal. Toby then took the trio on tour where their fan base has been growing and growing. After releasing the Off The Hillbilly Hook EP last year, the trio is back with their debut full-length album Tailgate.
The title comes from the brand new single, “Shakin’ That Tailgate” and the tune, which Butter co-wrote with country star Brady Seals. With countrified rock n roll guitars the tune fits well within Trailer Choir’s previous fun-lovin’ tunes but there’s something about this one that feels more immediate and ready for radio consumption, not to mention how well it fits in with what Brady Seals has featured on his own recent album Play Time. The remix of recent Top 50 hit “Rollin’ through the Sunshine” adds a little instrumentation to the fun song that could’ve been a bigger hit had Show Dog not moved onto “Tailgate” as a single instead.
“Can’t Drink All Day” is a song that features a big, hook-filled chorus while “Last Man Standing” feels like a big highlight on the album (and the EP before it) as it showcases the trio’s will to work harder than everyone else to make their career work. Fans that know who Stephen Cochran is may have heard “Walmart Flowers” from him but they probably didn’t know that Vinny and Butter are co-writers of the tune with Thom Shepherd. In the Trailer Choir’s version the song is basically the same but gains the added benefit of having sterling harmonies from the trio.
“In My Next Five Beers” is a honky tonk-ready party tune that has a strong lyric that recalls classic country tunes of the 1970s. Butter, Vinny, Thom Shepherd and Isaac Rich are the co-writers of the tune while “Girls Love To Go Dancin’” is another radio-ready fun-lovin’ tune. The Top 30 hit “Rockin’ The Beer Gut” and “Off The Hillbilly Hook” round-out a record that is tailor-made for parties and any time you may feel like you need to get your mind ready for a good time. Tailgate is the product of a damn good live band recording the kind of songs that they do best and it’s something that country music (all genres really) could use more of.