Album Review – The Malpass Brothers’ Self-Titled Album is Pure, Classic Country

The Malpass Brothers

“This is who we are…My brother Taylor and I do the type of music we do because this music speaks to us, and speaks to the souls of its listeners. For us, traditional country music is the ‘real deal’ – every song portrays life’s joys, heartaches, problems and happiness. It comes from the heart, and has depth and truth. Nothing is sugar coated. Our goal, really, is to see this music be revived, to help ensure it doesn’t fade away. It is so encouraging to have young people come to our shows with a new interest in our ‘old music.’ Being able to introduce what we love to another generation feels like a great accomplishment for us. We want this music to be around for our children’s children…” – Chris Malpass

Ladies and gentlemen, meet The Malpass Brothers. They’re a duo made up of brothers Taylor and Chris Malpass. Together they make country music. Not just any country music, but classic country music. They’re inspired by the likes of Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams, Merle Haggard and Johnny Cash. Speaking of The Hag, they toured with him for six years and released an album under Hag Records. To top it all off, look at the way they dress and their haircuts above. They’re rocking the Conway Twitty look! I think you get the picture: The Malpass Brothers couldn’t be anymore country if they tried. So does their new self-titled album sound as country as they look? Oh yes, yes it does.

The first song to kick off the album is “A Death in the Family.” The brothers prove right away they can tackle classic country on this Bill Anderson song. The fiddles and pedal steel guitar are perfect. Next the Malpass Brothers cover the Bobby Bare song, “Which One is to Blame.” Once again they knock it out of the park, as their vocal delivery is spot on. You think you’re listening to some artist from the 60s when it’s two brothers in their early 20s in the year 2015. One of my favorite covers the brothers do on the album is the Jerry Lee Lewis song, “It’ll Be Me.” It just feels like a perfect fit for the two and the piano play is dazzling. Once again I want more piano in country songs.

“Learn To Love Me Too” is a love song where the man is not only convincing his love to love him, but trying to convince himself to love himself too. He’s made some mistakes in the past and is hoping to make up for them now. I’m assuming this is a new song and not a cover, as I couldn’t find anything indicating it was a cover. Regardless whoever wrote it did a great job and brought a new perspective to a love song. Taylor Malpass takes the lead vocals on the Willie Nelson tune, “Hello Walls.” They’re phenomenal, as his bellowing vocals on the opening notes instantly pull the listeners in. Not too many artists can do so much justice to a Willie song and that’s exactly what the brothers do here. This album continues to get better as next is the Marty Robbins song, “Begging To You.” Chris Malpass nails the higher notes on this song and adds the right amount of emotion to this heartbreak classic. The sweeping piano play in the bridge is just icing on the cake to this sweet song.

“Here In Alberta I’ll Stay” is one of three new songs on the album and the Malpass Brothers of course nail it even. Written by Pete Goble, the song is about a cowboy from Texas finding the love of his life, a cowgirl from Alberta, Canada. This is my favorite song on the album because these two simply get country love ballads and I hope they tackle more original material on their next album. So far in the album the Malpass Brothers have covered Bill Anderson, Marty Robbins and Willie Nelson. Next? George Strait’s “I Met A Friend of Yours Today.” The song is about a man overhearing another man talk about his wife at a bar and realizing she’s cheating on him. Once again they brilliantly cover a song from an iconic country artist.

Oh, but the Malpass Brothers decide to go even higher up on the country music legend scale in their covers. They perform a song by the country music king himself, Hank Williams. Now this is ballsy! “Baby, We’re Really In Love” is a simple love song that is part of the foundation of what country music truly is. I think Hank would be pretty proud of the Malpass Brothers performing this song. The third original song on the album (at least I think it is, as I couldn’t find any information that says it is a cover) is “I Found Someone To Love,” a song about a man falling in love with a woman, but she doesn’t love him back. Despite her not feeling the same way, the man is still persistent in his love for her. Again the Malpass Brothers simply get love ballads.

Once again the brothers tackle a Hank song, this time it’s “I Just Don’t Like This Kind of Livin’.” It’s a heartbreak song about a man not enjoying the life he has with his woman and wanting to get out of it. I think I’m running out of superlatives to describe how great The Malpass Brothers are. The final song on the album is “Satan and The Saint,” which I knew was a Louvin Brothers song just by looking at the title. There’s plenty of acoustic guitar and mandolin on this song, the signature sound of The Louvin Brothers. Congratulations to you Malpass Brothers, as I’m now convinced you could cover any country song you want and it would be awesome.

Very rarely am I left speechless and a loss for words when listening to a great album, but this is the case with The Malpass Brothers’ new self-titled album. This is just pure, classic country that words can’t do justice. I’ve listened to this album over and over. I can’t get over how great it is and how two young artists like Chris and Taylor Malpass get country music so damn well. These guys were born to make country music. If you’re a fan of pop country music, don’t listen to this album. It’s simply too country for you. For those who love traditional and classic country, buy this album, press play and prepare to be amazed. You can’t get anymore country than this album. This is one of my favorites of 2015 and I can’t wait to hear more music from The Malpass Brothers for years to come.

Grade: 10/10

 

22 thoughts on “Album Review – The Malpass Brothers’ Self-Titled Album is Pure, Classic Country

  1. Derek June 2, 2015 / 11:17 am

    Man, this album just rules. Taylor and Chris just nail these covers too! Sometimes I wish I was alive in the 50s and 60s to hear this music in it’s inception, but a throwback/cover album like this certainly does the job!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Josh Schott June 2, 2015 / 11:26 am

      Same here. This is just so cool and I’m glad they care so much about keeping the integrity of country music intact.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Zack June 2, 2015 / 11:20 am

    I saw these guys with Merle Haggard about 2 years ago and I was blown away at how cool of a throwback they were! I noticed you guys put some of their songs in your favorite songs for June post. Thank you guys for letting me know that they had a new album out as I would have never known! You guys are the only site I’ve seen so far that has covered these guys. Anyway, I bought this album yesterday, and much like Whitey Morgan’s “Sonic Ranch”, I believe that the covers are mastered by the singers, and that they hardly even feel like covers. My favorites are probably , upon first listen, “A Death In The Family”, “Here In Alberta I’ll Stay”, and “I Just Don’t Like This Kind Of Living”.

    Thanks again for letting me know about this album! These guys are the real deal! Jeez May brought us 3 10/10 albums……The rest of the year has its work cut out for it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Josh Schott June 2, 2015 / 11:34 am

      Oh I can’t imagine what they sound like live! No problem! Yes it’s surprised me that nobody else has picked up on these guys, as they are without a doubt worthy of attention. As I said in the review, you can’t get more country than these guys.

      As many great albums as we’ve had so far, I still think there’s even better to come, which is insane. We still have albums from Jason Isbell, Alan Jackson and Lindi Ortega. On top of that Sturgill Simpson, Jamey Johnson and Karen Jonas are all expected to release new albums too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Raymond June 2, 2015 / 11:45 am

        Maddie & Tae Kip Moore if Mickey Guyton and Jana Kramer get around too releasing it Josh. Kacey man I think we’re gonna start seeing some good albums. Also Billy Currington album came out today are you guys gonna cover it. It’s doing pretty well on iTunes.

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      • Josh Schott June 2, 2015 / 11:52 am

        I’m well aware of those, but I doubt any of them are album of the year candidates like the other artists I mentioned. The bar has been set very high and it’s only June. Pretty good won’t cut it for it to make it as an album of the year candidate. This year’s field is much tougher and much more competitive than last year’s field. Sturgill had the award wrapped up in May, as no other album was in it’s league.

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      • Raymond June 2, 2015 / 12:10 pm

        I think Kacey and Jana have a shot. Kacey Ashley Monroe self explanatory. Jana if she makes sure Love is never on the record and record songs on par with I Got The Boy. Voila! Album of the year candidate. Also did you see Jana’s add last night I laughed real hard. Heh.

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  3. Lisandro Berry-Gaviria June 2, 2015 / 11:42 am

    I love this album, but I think I would’ve liked it more if they didn’t do as many covers. I prefer it when artists write original songs as opposed to just covering other artists’ work…I mean, it’s fine if you only do one or two covers on an album, or just do a complete cover album for that matter, but when you just do covers for most of your album, it doesn’t show that much creativity (in my opinion, at least. Maybe I’m just nitpicking.)
    That being said, I did think they absolutely nailed the covers, and for the most part I think this is a great debut from the Malpass Brothers. This year has been just so awesome for country music (non-mainstream of course, xD)!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Josh Schott June 2, 2015 / 11:48 am

      Yes I hope they do a whole original album next. An album of covers is good for me for now, as it’s a nice introduction to listeners and shows the kind of music they like to make.

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    • Clovis Mello June 2, 2015 / 4:34 pm

      I was thinking the same thing as you. I love their sound, and they nailed it. Now, show me something more that’s not a cover. If they can make new music in this style, they will have themselves a niche all to themselves!

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  4. Stew June 2, 2015 / 11:44 am

    “I Met A Friend Of Your’s Today” is about a man who overheard another man talking about his significant other at a bar, and he realizes that she is cheating on him. Below are the lyrics:

    And I was workin’ on the other side of town
    And comin’ home, I thought I’d stop and have the round
    And in this bar, I heard someone speak your name
    And that’s how, I met a friend of yours today

    I listened for awhile, and I could tell
    At that stranger there, he knew you much too well
    And I introduced myself, and then you should have seen his face
    Oh what a shame, I met a friend of yours today

    Liked by 1 person

    • Josh Schott June 2, 2015 / 11:49 am

      Thank you! I misheard the lyrics and I changed that in the review. This is what happens when you write multiple reviews a day. Haha

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      • southtexaspistolero June 2, 2015 / 4:49 pm

        “I Met A Friend of Yours Today” is such a great song. George Strait nailed it on his Lead On album back in 1994, and it was originally recorded by Mel Street in 1975, if I remember correctly.

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  5. Stew June 2, 2015 / 11:51 am

    That’s understandable! You guys do a great job and I like visiting your site for reviews!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. bob June 2, 2015 / 6:12 pm

    Good album. I like their sound.
    Tracks 4 (“Learn to Love Me Too”) and 10 (“I Found Someone to Love”) were written by the Malpass Brothers, Christopher Barrett and Taylor. I confirmed it on the BMI website. BMI, ASCAP & SESAC are PRO’s (Performing Rights Organizations) that you can search by song title, artist, songwriter, etc. Some songs from “Memory That Bad”, their first album, only list Christopher Barrett Malpass as the songwriter. The songs include “I Just Don’t Like Loving You”, “I’m Leaving You Today”, “Man in Black’s Wearing White”, “Memory That Bad”, and “Oldest Flame and Latest Spark”. I guess the omission of Taylor’s name could be an error that was corrected for the songs on their new album.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kev June 3, 2015 / 10:53 am

    Fabulous! And I can recommend their “Memory That Bad” album too!

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  8. Kathy June 3, 2015 / 2:07 pm

    I have all their CD’s and they are great!! Nothing else has been in my CD player since this arrived. After watching the awards shows and going to concerts over the last several years, we come away asking “Where is the country music?” Little did we know it was right here in Goldsboro, NC hiding away with the Malpass brothers! They are great guys, have a solid family base, and can sing true, heart wrenching country music, music that brought country music to where it is today. Nuff said.

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  9. Jordan June 3, 2015 / 10:09 pm

    Wow I’m so glad I read this article, I absolutely love these guys. Do yall take submissions for album reviews for neotradional leaving country/red dirt country albums to review on this site?

    Like

    • Josh Schott June 3, 2015 / 10:51 pm

      We review all forms of country music and take submissions via email.

      Like

  10. Cobra June 3, 2015 / 10:26 pm

    I’m going to go ahead and add this one to my Amazon cart. Thanks for the recommendation!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Cobra June 11, 2015 / 7:28 pm

      Just got it today and absolutely love it!

      Liked by 1 person

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