When I was introduced to Tylor and the Train Robbers a couple of years ago on their album The Best of the Worst Kind, I fell in love with the band's particular brand of country music. The way Tylor Ketchum's voice has particular inflections that almost sound like a countrified Bob Dylan was unique. And the band was tight. They felt like they had a connection and of course they did and do- the band is made up of brothers (Tylor Ketchum, Jason Bushman, and Tommy Bushman) as well as Ketchum's father-in-law (Johnny Pisano). That unique connection makes the music feel connected and loose all at the same time. Everyone is on the same page making for a tight listen.
On the Trainrobbers' newest album, Non-Typical Find, we find the boys a bit more introspective than on their previous album. Considering this album was written and recorded during the nation-wide shutdown of 2020, that's no surprise. Partnering with Cody Braun (of Reckless Kelly fame), this album also has a really great production with a loose, familiar feel. The music let's Ketchum's words take center-stage with flairs along the way to add emphasis to the song.
The album kicks off with three really great songs that are going to be in heavy rotation for me over the next year. The standout here is "Worth The While." A song about feeling a little lost or out of touch and taking a different approach and/or point of view to try to gain new perspective, this feels like an almost anthem for where the country is at the moment. Yeah, sometimes we aren't going to get along, but if we can just try to see it from the other side's point of view, maybe we can learn to live for each other instead of ourselves.
The title track chronicles the discovery of bones by one of Ketchum's friends. Ketchum supposes what events may have transpired that may have led to this woman's remains ending up in this particular spot. The music almost belies the true nature of the song. At the base, this is a song about a death and the terribly sad discovery of the remains long after the death. But, the song is an uptempo, almost hopeful tune. It's the best song on the album, especially musically. The fiddle, the telecaster, and the pedal steel thread and weave together so perfectly.
The second half of the album is anchored by the song "Staring Down The North." With a crunchy slide guitar and menacing chords, this one tended to get under my skin and stay there a while after each listen. This one jams and showcases the Train Robbers' diverse, yet connected styles. The remainder of the album finishes with songs about trying to figure out your path and facing fears and depression ("Back The Other Way") and trying to always look for positive spins on current situations ("Silver Line").
Tylor and the Train Robbers are a band to keep watching. With their previous album and Non-Typical Find they are building the kind of catalog that is sure to keep people interested and I believe will continue to grow their fanbase. They are a tight family band with a hell of a songwriter at the helm. This album is worth your time. It's everything you want and need at this moment in time. I'm on the Train Robbers bandwagon. I think you should join me. Their magnum opus is still to come and I'll be here with open ears eagerly awaiting.
Non-Typical Find is available today everywhere you buy and stream fine music.