Angels & Outlaws

Howard and David Bellamy have built an international following and remarkable career longevity by writing perceptive, witty songs and singing them with casual aplomb.

Howard and David Bellamy have built an international following and remarkable career longevity by writing perceptive, witty songs and singing them with casual aplomb. They resurrect most of the best ones here, with a tribute treatment that resists the temptation to be fawning, mostly because the Brothers themselves take part. These are just good songs played very well, whether it's Alan Jackson's laid-back "You Ain't Whistlin' Dixie," Hal Ketchum and Lisa Brokop passionately delivering the mega-hit "Let Your Love Flow," Willie Nelson chiming in on the Waylon-esque "Guardian Angel" or the great John Anderson bringing the swamp funk to "Alligator Alley." Who better to lend her talents to "If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me)" than Dolly Parton, and Montgomery Gentry add backbone to "Old Hippie." Similarly, Tanya Tucker and David Allan Coe bring weirdness to "Reggae Cowboy." But it's all good—really, really good.—RW