Reverend Horton Heat has always been about revivals and new beginnings and obviously by the title of their new record (“Whole New Life”) not much is changing.
When you dive into the music you’ll find that assumption to be precisely true. The song “Whole New Life” kicks off the record and is a barn burner. The blasting rockabilly number immediately catapults itself into the bands best five songs of all time, a tall task considering this is the groups 12th effort. While the rest of the record can’t hold to that standard, it still is very good. “Hog Tied Woman” is a good rocker that is vintage Heat and “Hate To See You Cry” is a typically good slower change of pace for the album. Not everything is business as usual here though, a permanent piano player is installed here and really helps add to the rockabilly rumble on many songs and there is even a piano solo on the lead single “Whole New Life.” Other high points are the elated “Got It In My Pocket” where the Rev is excited to pop the question and “Don’t Let Go of Me” which clocks in as the slowest song on the record but is still a slow burning winner. The album ends on a cover of the tiredest variety, the world didn’t really need another version of “Viva Las Vegas” but you get one here, it isn’t particularly bad but it is likely the most unoriginal cover imaginable.
The band really cashes in here and shows they are as good as they ever have been, their career has a couple lowlights but this will definitely not go down as one of them.
Key Tracks: “Whole New Life” “Got It In My Pocket” “Don’t Let Go of Me”