Press

02/20/2007

Chris Knight / The Trailer Tapes
Drifters Church Records

In the summer of 1996, Houstonian Frank Liddell and a 22-year old engineer named Joe Hayden took some beer, guns, fishing poles, and a portable tape machine up to Chris Knight’s mobile home in Slaughter, Kentucky. Knight wasn’t on the national radar yet; that would come with the release of Chris Knight in 1998. But the...

12/13/2006

When Bruce Springsteen writes a song about a guy whose teenage girlfriend is pregnant, you get the tragic and philosphical "The River". When Chris Knight wirtes it, you get "Enough Rope," one of his many songs about gritting your teeth and getting on with life. And when he mentions a new factory and Grandpa's farm in the first verse of "Dirt," you can guess what point he'll be making....

11/29/2006

Creepily dark yet compelling and often stuning songs from a master story-teller.

Chris Knight grew up in the small western Kentucky mining town of Slaughters. It's rather apt as many of his songs explore the darker side of life; murder, death, violent fights, boozing and slipping around. Montgomery Gentry, Stacy Dean Campbell, Confederate Railroad, John Anderson, Ty Herndon and Randy...

11/27/2006

Chris Knight, I'm sure, bristles at the incessant comparisons to Steve Earle and John Prine. With Enough Rope (his fourth album, by my count) and Nashville veteran Gary Nicholson's production, he's added enough classic guitar rock to get John Mellencamp and Bruce Springsteen on the list, too. To my hearing, however, such comparisons fall somewhere between beside the point and unfair.

To...

10/10/2006

Like an angry John Mellencamp, Chris Knight blasts the unfairness of life through stories of small-town and (especially) rural hopes, and the dashed dreams that too often bring them down. Knight lacks the subtlety of some similarly character-driven songwriters like Springsteen and Dylan, but subtlety isn't his aim; hoarse passion and evocative imagery give this pissed-off holler of an album...

09/26/2006

Chris Knight began writing this album aiming for a hit on country radio, the only mass arena left for his blend of 1970s-’80s rock, folk, and country. But he couldn’t bring himself to do it, ending up instead with the same John-Prine-to-Steve-Earle brand that has won him only a small following over three previous discs. That might explain the title of album #4, a 13-cut set that twangs a...

09/24/2006

Outlaw roots rocker Chris Knight, reared in Kentucky, hard-scarred in Nashville, and recently dubbed an honorary Texan, picks himself up from the canvas one more time on Enough Rope, his fourth somewhat-major label release in eight years. Largely ignored by the establishment, whether country or AOR radio, Knight has cut his teeth in the shadows of lazy comparisons to Steve Earle (whose Twang...

09/05/2006

Chris Knight, Enough Rope (* * * 1/2)
Chris Knight peoples Enough Rope with a small town’s worth of gritty characters trying to hang on to their love, their land and their pride. “There ain’t much of nothing left of this place where I became myself,” he sings in Rural Route. That sense of displacement pervades the album, from an old man’s resignation that the land he’s worked for a...

09/04/2006

From the ex-hellion drinking ice tea in his yard to the city laborer who'd rather work his job than wear chains like his cousin Willie, this is where the Kentucky storyteller gets off the outlaw romanticism train, which turned into a Trailways bus years ago. "Old Man" deserves to be programmed back to back with John Prine, "Dirt" with Freedy Johnston. Still, put him head to head with those...

09/03/2006

Chris is a rough-hewn, detail-driven alt-country singer/songwriter—imagine a prepoliticized Steve Earle borrowing John Mellencamp’s larynx. The Slaughters, Ky., native’s songwriting is only getting more focused with time, as heard on this fine fourth effort. These carefully honed character sketches and surely paced narratives evoke real rural life more accurately and honestly than most...