Album Review: Pure Luck – Self-Titled

By Ryan Falla

Pure Luck is a fresh new act steaming out of Austin, Texas. Despite this self-titled record being the debut for this band they are no newbies to the music world. Vocalist/banjoman/guitarist J.D Pinkus is a veteran of the music scene, having spent time with illustrious acts such as the Butthole Surfers and the Melvins. Despite the aforementioned grunge/punk acts it needs to be noted this is not a cut and dry rock record. This is very much a Southern rock/country record; and as someone who stays away from modern country I can tell you ‘Pure Luck’ beats the trend of mediocrity by putting together a record cemented in the outlaw/highway countrymen from decades past.

While Lynyrd Skynyrd is a solid starting point when it comes to describing this band’s sound, Pure Luck approach their music with a stronger footing in country rock as opposed to the Southern rock of Skynyrd. Yes, I know all the red flags in your head are blaring like crazy, but I’m going to need you to drop the preconceptions on country before you pop into this record. Yes I know the reputation is trash, but everything that Pure Luck does with this record supersedes the reputation of country. Too much country nowadays is made for radio and popularity, yet Pure Luck trashes this misconception as to what country needs to do and makes music for the sake of enjoyment.

There are no motives behind their music other than crafting quality music; there are absolutely ZERO pop elements present in this record. That needs to be repeated in this day and age where pop music infests country like an incurable plague; Pure Luck flexes their immunity to this horrid disease as they take you on a trip through the old-school countryside before it was bastardized by the industry. Pure Luck is fresh and quite fancy. Pure Luck is your ol’ southern granddaddy strumming some tunes on his porch about the troubles of the southerner; you almost forget about the blonde, Daisy Duke wearing, lollipop singin’, popularity obsessed country “rockers” in the ocean of genuine country rock.

Tracks like ‘Cerveza’ bring you down to earth, almost face to face with the earth, as you listen to the troubled crooning of a man who just can’t leave the bottle. My favorite thing about country is the focus is always focused on the most blue-collar of subject matters, that’s something lost in the modern muck. While Pure Luck hits you with some downtrodden, sullen tunes like ‘Cerveza’ they know how to turn it up and introduce you to jaunty southern hospitality.

‘The Ballad of Haul and Ass’ is the epitome of good ol’ country boy rock. Overladen with rockin’ banjos and the sweetest of country licks is the most genuine country song I have heard in a while. Pure Luck is just an incredible breath of fresh air after modern country forgot how to breathe.

From the get-go this album is an attention grabber, ‘Silver or Lead’ dropping you straight into the dirty and unforgiving dustbowl of the south. Pure Luck takes you through many different journeys throughout the record; from the good, the bad, and the ugliest of blues. ‘Good Trouble’ is a great song to jump into if you doubt the concept of “quality country rock”; a highly energetic and jaunty tune that’ll get your foot tapping with joy whether you’d want it to or not.

For all you metal fans out there, Pure Luck has your needs taken care of, the track ‘Happy Cow’ blazes with a heavy rockabilly intro that speeds into an hectic, speedy rock tune that pushes through with some thrash metal fire.

There is just so much diversity and variety with the debut record by Pure Luck, from hillbilly country to fast moving southern rock and the good old southern blues tunes. It’s almost as if all the good country-rock that’s been neglected over the past couple of decades is making a grand reappearance with Pure Luck.

If you’re up for trying something new, the exploration of a genre you thought was trashed beyond all recognition, then you need to give Pure Luck a go, they will show you everything you didn’t know you wanted.

They might call themselves Pure Luck, but everything in this records dictates the pure skill behind the masterful crafting of this amazing southern-rock record. A much needed revitalization for a long forgotten genre.

Rating: 8.5/10

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Record Label: Heavy Feather
Release Date: June 2nd 2017

Track Listing:
01. Silver or Lead (3:17)
02. Dark and Cold (3:17)
03. Where’s It All Go (2:46)
04. Broke, Soaked, And Dirty (4:08)
05. Good Trouble (2:34)
06. Happy Cow (2:56)
07. Cerveza (4:26)
08. No Pride (4:26)
09. Your Face Or Mine (4:01)
10. You Look Funny When You Cry (3:47)
11. Let Me In (3:29)
12. You Left The Bottle (6:05)
13. Ballad Of Haul and Ass (3:10)

Total Duration: 48:22

Pure Luck links: website | facebook