After a four year hiatus, the Old 97s are back with their sixth record. Drag It Up sees the band in a much more mellow, introspective mood then their previous poppy albums. The Old 97s are a pop rock band from the south with a bit of a country hint.
They kick things off with the relatively upbeat track “Won’t Be Home,” which tells the story of a rough break-up punctuated by the lines, “I’m pulling off the road, I’m opening the door. I’m giving you the pavement, I’m telling you what for. You’re no more than a thought and you’re getting smaller in my rearview mirror.”
At times this album gets a bit too mellow. The track “Blinding Sheets of Rain,” with lyrics like “I love you lost its meaning to shipwrecked fools like me,” is a standard tale of lost love that just sort of drags on.
After a lull in the middle of the album of some well-written (but painfully slow) songs, the vengeful track “New Kid” gives this CD new life. This song is the story of a former new kid who’s bitter at his replacement. “I’m gonna toil away until my judgement day, I will be rewarded for the good that I did.”
“Adelaide” is one of the most solemn but interesting tracks on the album. The lyrics repeatedly appeal to heaven for help with the problems of love and different trials of life. The ironic tale of “Friends Forever,” is about a normal kid who didn’t fit a stereotype, but found out life outside of high school was much different and better.
This is a personal and honest album that will connect to anyone who hasn’t led a picture perfect life.
Matt Dingerdissen can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.