Somewhere along the way, amid personnel changes, heart attacks, and label shifts, the Kentucky HeadHunters have evolved into the great American rock'n'roll band.

Somewhere along the way, amid personnel changes, heart attacks, and label shifts, the Kentucky HeadHunters have evolved into the great American rock'n'roll band. They've found a welcome home at Audium, and on the follow-up to the criminally neglected Tales From the Grass String Ranch (2001), they resurface with a soulful, bluesy collection. Doug Phelps has become a fine frontman—and Reese Wynan's "ole black 35 Hammond" and Johnnie Johnson's spritely piano are both perfect fits. But the 'Heads train has always been driven by Greg Martin, a versatile, tuneful guitarist, and Fred Young, a mutant drummer that never met a fill he didn't like. Mostly laid-back, things turn decidedly harder in the disc's second half, beginning with the crotch-rock anthem "We All Need It" and wry "Mr. Perfect" before wrapping with the truly hellacious "What You See Is What You Get," replete with a thunderous drum solo and stone blues coda.—RW