When you think of modern day southern rock n roll, the band that is going to come everyone’s mind is the State Line Mob.Their three-guitar weaving line-up is a southern outlaw sound & image that’s hard to forget. The band was formed in 2007 by vocalists/songwriters Phillip Crunk and Dana Crunk.They both previously played for years in different bands, while cutting their teeth in some of the south’s most dangerous and run down honkytonk-taverns, where they learned the true meaning of southern grit and tough determination.
At the time they formed the State Line Mob, the two were playing for tips and free moonshine & beer at a dive surrounded by a swamp in Northwest Alabama, with no roads leading out but one, a dirt road that they plan on following straight to the top. Their name "State Line Mob" came from a real Dixie-crime organization that existed on the Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee border that operated illegal gambling halls and whiskey distilleries, amongst other numerous criminal activities, in the backwoods of these great states before being run out by Sheriff Buford Pusser and his posse back in the 60's & 70's era. The band will not comment on whether the State Line Mob still exists or whether they have any affiliation with this underground organization. The group was discovered in Muscle Shoals Alabama by producer and co-writer on the album Chris Sevier who has worked with artist such as Eliot Morris, Matt Woods, Chad Bradford, Painkiller Hotel, Jason Childers, who was looking for an authentic country act, having become sick of the imposters clogging Nashville and making a mockery of southern music itself. He discovered the band while they were playing a local gig on his way back from Nashville and signed them to his Severe Records on a non-exclusive basis. And in doing so, authenticity is what he got.
Their debut album "Ruckus" is the best American southern rock album of 2009 & beyond being what some folks are saying is the best Southern Rock album since Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Street Survivors" way back in 1977. If you think this is all hyperbole, then just listen to the album. The band's outlaw sound is similar to that of Bad Company’s and 38 Special’s, updated for this decade & era. Three guitars batter you while leaders Phillip Crunk and Dana Crunk trade off on vocals and sing for you southern harmony. The album deals with subjects as diverse as a southern man’s pride in his 70 Dodge Charger in “American Beauty” and the plight of the State Line Mob against the law itself in “McNairy County Line”. Clever tracks abound, the best of which are "Hooked", "It Keeps Me Going”, "Holding You", and "Who Do You Love." With "Ruckus," they have established themselves as a force to be reckoned with in American music. The song “Baby I miss You” is straight-ahead Southern boogie, whereas “Southern Comfort” is the essence of Southern soul. Most of the tracks embody country-fried blues-rock and driving, arena-ready southern rock, that will leave no listener disappointed. Paraphrasing the title of one of the album's songs, “I Need Rock and Roll.”
Fortunately, you don't need a bottle of Jack or even a trace of Southern lineage to appreciate the genius of “Ruckus".The lyrics are great, the trio of electric guitars is blessed with raw production & will have you cranking up the album for your friends. And, after a few spins of “Ruckus,” you might even find yourself digging out those old Allman Brothers’ LPs again.