Over the course of a quarter century and more than 20 albums, swaggering Arizona-based rockers The Supersuckers have done their best to live up to their self-proclaimed “Greatest Rock ‘n’ Roll Band in the World” moniker. Even the stage-3 throat cancer that has afflicted frontman Eddie Spaghetti has not been able to derail the veteran band.
Though they’ve put touring on hold while Eddie undergoes surgery, radiation treatment and rehab, The Supersuckers have managed to cobble together another first-rate record in “Holdin’ the Bag.” It’s a 12-song collection of twangy goodness that maintains the momentum of last year’s terrific “Get the Hell” release.
“We had rocked ourselves into oblivion with ‘Get the Hell,’ so we were ready for a country break,” Spaghetti explains. “We had just done a one-off country show, and we enjoyed that so much that it felt natural to start writing country songs. I really felt like I was onto something, and I felt more and more inspired as the process went on.”
It’s a sonic shift, but one that works. Spaghetti (vocals/bass), Marty Chandler (guitar) and Chris Von Streicher (drums) seem right at home as an outlaw country outfit and “Holdin’ the Bag” is further buoyed by guest spots from Hayes Carll and Lydia Loveless. There isn’t a bad song in the bunch, but The Supersuckers shine brightest on the title track, “This Life …. WithYou,” “Man on a Mission,” “I Can’t Cry,” “I Do What I Can (To Get By),” “That’s How It Gets Done” and “Georgia on a Fast Train.” Enjoy, y’all. (Jeffrey Sisk)