It’s been four years since Trampled By Turtles released their last critically acclaimed studio album, Wild Animals. In that time, the band took a well-deserved hiatus from constant touring to experience family and pursue personal projects.
The result of this hiatus is a new, invigorated record, Life is Good on the Open Road, and it does not disappoint. As frontman Dave Simonette explains, this record is a “return to form” and is slated to be a collective favorite amongst the Turtles.
After a successful retreat in the woods of Minnesota, the band was inspired to examine what matters most in life amidst the torrents of historic world tragedy and the loss of heroes. The largest mass shooting in American history, coupled with the untimely loss of Tom Petty, set the focus while layers of hope and the longing of togetherness compounded the glue.
Out of the gate, the group sets the ramble-bar high with “Kelly’s Bar,” a ditty pulled from Simonette’s time spent at a local pub, and the record is appropriately wrapped by the slow-waltzing closing track, “I Learned The Hard Way,” a heart-wrenched ballad of simple truth and boot-stomped reality. The tracks in between pull the string-heavy tightrope of inside/outside of the Turtle’s standard shell with departing strummed-goodness.
This album is pure testament wrapped in beautiful chemistry and profound brotherhood. Family takes the wheel of the soul and makes everything sound wonderful on the open road of life. Enjoy the heat.
- Chris Rucker