Cuff the Duke frontman Wayne Petti has always vaguely resembled a young, gaunt Greg Keelor. Now he's starting to sound like him, too.
After the Church of Satan stomp of opening track If I Live Or If I Die, the Oshawa country punks make a hard right turn into Blue Rodeo's brand of easygoing rural rock, especially in the sparkling Failure To Some, where a Cuddy/Keelor-like double-vocal chorus spins out into an extended fuzzy jam that immediately recalls Wilco's Hell Is Chrome guitar prog.
The infectious jangle rock continues on Remember The Good Times, where Petti laments a lost friend with Byrds-like nostalgia. But Sidelines dips at Ballad Of A Tired Old Man, whose Tex-Mex shuffle and brass accompany clumsy anti-war lyrics. Long Road flatlines as well, confirming that tunes about constant touring are as worn out as their van's tire treads.
Cuff the Duke do an in-store at Criminal Records Tuesday (October 23).