Mike Herrera's Tumbledown
"Tumbledown"

(End Sounds 2009)Mike Herrera\'s Tumbledown - Tumbledown

Now before longtime fans of pop punkers MxPx get themselves all worked up and concerned about the fact that the band’s frontman, Mike Herrera, is doing a country side-project, do yourselves a favor and breathe. Let's look at the facts. Tumbledown might have acoustic guitars but the songs on the project’s debut release – ranging from topics such as drinking, broken hearts, drinking, the one that got away, and drinking – are more akin to the softer, less rowdy side of Irish-American punk bands like the Dropkick Murphys or Flogging Molly.

There’s plenty of giddy-up and go with galloping tracks like “Butcher of San Antone,” which features singer Nicole Pike harmonizing with Herrera, and “Homeward Bound” while elsewhere on tracks like “State Line” it is more of a dusty Western stride that isn’t in any hurry as it moseys along with plenty of quality guitar playing. But quick, upbeat let’s-just-have-fun tracks like “Let’s Drink” and “Break Out of History” grab the most attention on “Tumbledown.”

Herrera doesn’t step too far away from his comfort zone with “Tumbledown.” And that’s perfectly fine, there’s nothing wrong with that. “Tumbledown” is fun, light-hearted and well done for what it is. “Tumbledown” is definitely country-inspired rock. But while Herrera is probably going for bad boys like Hank Williams, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash, he doesn’t quite pull off the rough edge. Regardless, Herrera makes it seem easy and the album is effortless listening. Just hang on there and go for the ride.

B-

buy it!