Best known as a super producer who helped shape the careers of Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins and Green Day, and later as the co-founder of alt-rock outfit Garbage, Bruce Vig got his start some 30 years ago playing country-influenced pop/rock music. He returns to those roots with The Emperors of Wyoming (featuring Vig and pals Phil Davis, Peter Anderson and Frank Anderson), a country-rock collective who scores with this self-titled debut platter.
It’s a rootsy gathering of 13 songs that have me hoping for more from a band that was some 30-plus years in the making. The opening tandem of “Bittersweet Sound of Goodbye” and “Avalanche Girl” sets the tone, and the Emperors also reign supreme on “Rebirth of the Cool,” “Brand New Heart of Stone,” “Cruel Love Ways,” “Sweep Away” and “Drinking Man’s Town.” Good stuff. (Jeffrey Sisk)