‘Dragons’ is the first full release from Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors since 2017’s critically acclaimed ‘Souvenir’. In between records Holcomb kept busy by releasing the E.P. ‘Goodbye Road’ with folk duo Johnnyswim, touring with his wife Ellie Holcomb, and a series of support shows for Willie Nelson. Not one to rest on his laurels for too long Holcomb turned to fellow musicians and songwriters Lori McKenna, Natalie Hemby, Sean McConnell, Zach Williams and the record’s producer Cason Cooley to explore life’s shared experiences. The resulting six co-writes form the nucleus of ‘Dragons’.
There’s a more arranged sound to the record than on Holcomb’s previous works. Using synthesisers and layered production on songs such as ‘End of the World’, ‘Make It Look So Easy’ and ‘Bittersweet’, the songs are instantly accessible anthems that stick with the listener and will hopefully get the airplay they deserve.
There’s a softer side to the record too. Title tracks ‘Dragons’ is a classic laid back country tale of advice being laid down by a wise elder. ‘Family’ is a shuffle based tribute to growing up, and ‘But I’ll Never Forget The Way You Make Me Feel’ is slow blues based tribute to a loved one.
The stand out songs on the record are ‘You Never Leave My Heart’, which is a touching tribute to Holcomb’s late brother who lost his life in a car accident and, ‘See the World’ which find’s Holcomb express his hopes and wishes for his own family.
‘Dragons’ is a big record that covers a lot of ground. Change comes to listener’s find at first, but it’s also a documentation of life and, the trials and tribulations that it throws up at people. With these ten songs Holcomb has put together a heartfelt and empathic tribute to the everyday emotions and situations that we all enjoy and endure.
‘Dragons’ is released on October 11th on Magnolia Music/Thirty Tigers