The House Rules

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It’s evident from the first harmonica riff that Christian Kane—best known as Eliot Spencer on the television show Leverage—isn’t acting when it comes to his debut release. Christian co-wrote nearly every song on the album, each with vivid lyricism, and possesses a muscular, lithe voice perfectly suited to his Southern rock and blues-influenced tunes. Not your typical modern country record about sweet love and demure ladies, Christian’s central characters are bar-tough women who prefer jeans and cowboys boots to Dolce & Gabbana suits (“Callin’ All Country Women”) and have a healthy appreciation for beer and football (“American Made”). On the mid-tempo “Something’s Gotta Give,” he smolders with a passion to rise above his blue-collar living, and chases freedom in the fiddle-laced barnburner “Seven Days.” Christian simmers down with “Let Me Go,” where he pleads for the cessation of a dead-end relationship, and chronicles an unhealthy pairing that neither partner wants to leave in “Making Circles.” Southern rock takes a back seat to some jazz-influenced soul with a closing cover of Tracy Chapman’s 1988 song “Fast Car.”

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