Randy Montana - Randy Montana

Randy Montana has made waves with the Top 40 hit singles "1,000 Faces" and "Ain't Much Left Of Lovin' You" and now is releasing his self-titled debut album. Read on to find out what we think of the digital-only release.

Produced by Jay Joyce, Randy Montana is as strong a debut album you’re likely to hear in 2011.  The two lead singles showcase his songwriting ability but every song on the record is well-crafted. “Last Horse” impressed Emmylou Harris enough for her to lend some help on the song while “Assembly Line” feels like a long lost Tom Petty classic.

With a voice that certainly recalls UMG Nashville label mate Gary Allan, Randy rocks the mike on “Burn These Matches,” a song about a dude who realizes that the temptation of a hot little thing – who left her number on a match book – and what bringing that matchbook home or calling the number could mean to the relationship he has with his woman at home. It’s a strong story arc and features a strong guitar solo from Jedd Hughes.

“Goodbye Rain” is one two tracks on this record not from Randy’s own pen(“Like A Cowboy” is the other) but what strikes me most about the song (a Jonathan Singleton/Melissa Pierce/Dennis Matkosky co-write) is how well it fits in with Montana’s own compositions. It’s as strong lyrically as it is melodically and Randy really sells it. “Ain’t Hit Me Yet” may be the most ‘rocking’ song on the album but it once again draws parallels to the heartland rock of Tom Petty and Gary Allan.

Perhaps the best song on the record, “Back of My Heart” takes the old phrase “I had it in the back of my head” and turns it into the feeling surrounding the one that got away and how those memories are always gonna be there. The guy has moved on and is OK but those feelings will never leave.

With other artists releasing new albums that feature one to three good songs surrounded by filler tracks, Randy Montana bucks that trend with a supremely comprehensive album full of impressive songs. With Jay Joyce guiding Randy along, the record is also one of the most innovative sonically sounding records you’re likely to hear this year.

Buy: Amazon Digital