ALBUM REVIEW: Random As I Am (ranDDom As I Am) by Deryl Dodd

Music doesn't come much better than Deryl Dodd's stirring new album "Random As I Am." Indeed, the well-known country star has produced a project that will probably land on many Top 10 country album charts at the end of the year, and the unique cover art and title should not scare away traditional country fans. That's because Deryl Dodd has produced 13 uncompromising, Texas country tunes that will make both grandsons and grandfathers feel as happy as the Cowboys winning the Super Bowl.
The album is actually titled the misspelled and case-confused "ranDDom As I Am," but it starts off with a perfect grammar, slam dunk hit - the current single "Baby Where's My Bottle." Deryl Dodd's voice has never sounded better, and the production quality is stellar. However, it is the quiet and nuanced "Loveletters" that showcases Dodd's perfectly matured vocals. This is another radio-ready cut that will be especially pleasing to female fans.

However, the album's biggest surprise is "FM 2213," which illustrates a mixture of influences, including bluegrass and Red Dirt. Next, the stirring "Anybody Out There" is a heart-wrenching personal examination that has a winning, melodic chorus. Traditional country elements work for Deryl Dodd on "Fallin,'" but he again surprises with his beautiful vocal performance on "I'll Be Comin Home To You."

Radio program directors will rejoice with the Darius Rucker/Josh Gracin-esque cut "Love Around Here." This song is destined to be a major radio hit, and it could find mainstream country radio success. Honky tonk country fans will find plenty to like with "Somethin Aint Always Better Than Nothin."

However, the best track on the album is the toe-tapping, sing-a-long track "Can't Say No To Larry Joe." Concert audiences will eat up this cut faster than chicken wings at Hooters. Traditional country lovers will enjoy "One Night Too Long," and Deryl Dodd saves another potential Number One country chart hit for last with the terrific "Who Am I." The well-written lyrics and clear country melody are refreshingly simple without being simplistic - a difficult feat.

"Randon As I Am" showcases a country musician who has decided to write and perform music that he loves without the trappings of the cookie-cutter, country pop sound that permeates the country music scene at the moment. Deryl Dodd may describe himself as random, but you'll just call him (and his new album) darn good.

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