SOUTHERN HALO - SOUTHERN HALO
LCM ALBUM OF THE WEEK
Release Date: 30th June, 2015
Genre: Pop Country, Modern Country, Rock
Band Members: Natalia Morris, Christina Morris, Hannah Morris
Location: Cleveland, Mississippi, USA
Record Label: Southern Halo Music
The Mississippi Delta is always revered as the birthplace of the Blues and Rock & Roll. Southern Halo are a soulful southern country pop-rock teenage sister trio hailing from the small town of Cleveland, Mississippi in the Delta. Growing up in an area rich in musical history had many benefits for Natalia, Christina and Hannah Morris. Natalia is the main vocals, Hannah is on the bass guitar and Christina (Tinka) is on drums. A close-knit family nurtured the girls love of music and community support helped boost the sisters confidence. Their first live performance was in Cleveland at the Airport Grocery when Hannah (the youngest) was just nine years old. The stars aligned early for these three sisters. In 2014, Southern Halo made the National finals of the Texaco Country Showdown at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium® and recorded their first EP with Alabama’s Jeff Cook.
In the years since, Southern Halo has crafted a blend of new Country and Classic Country with a dash of Southern Rock to create CPR: Country/Pop/Rock. It’s a youthful, signature sound made immediately recognizable by the sweet sibling harmonies that are fast-becoming the sisters trademark. Their self-titled debut album 'Southern Halo' is a wonderful introduction to their music. A intoxicating mix of tempos and attitudes. Happiness exudes from the grooves and even heartache is uplifted by lively rhythmic arrangements.
Make no mistake this sisters can 'rock out' with their high-energy stage shows, honing their skills as openers for top-tier acts Brantley Gilbert, Eric Paslay, Tyler Farr, Randy Houser, John Michael Montgomery, Parmalee, Old Dominion, Jamie Lynn Spears, Craig Campbell, Uncle Kracker, Julie Roberts and B.B. King.
The album's openers is their first single release 'Little White Dress' written by Natalie and album co-producers Catt Gravitt and Gerald O'Brien. This hypnotically-upbeat Country radio debut received international success and critically acclaim. Some lovely harmonies on this one. Fun, sassy and feisty....almost a younger version of The Pistol Annies.
The bittersweet 'Life Rolls On' is about how things change as you get older, friends, relationships and life in general. Personal and relatable, it's something that all of us can experience, it’s hard sometimes but 'life rolls on'. It has hints of Kacey Musgraves. "How did I go from butterflies to a broken heart?". The very catchy toe-tapping beach country pop is up next in their major single 'Rewind'. It's a Chancie Neal, Catt Gravitt and Gerald O'Brien co-write. These ladies definitely can 'rock your flip-flops'.
With it's Backstreet Boys finger clicking intro 'I Don't Wanna Move On' expands into soft picked guitar and soft banjo & percussion and the sister's trademark harmonies. The track builds in intensity finishing with an almost First Aid Kit 'My Silver Lining' style ending. A track about not wanting to end a relationship and move on. Snowflakes and earthquakes collide in the tender 'Over You'. A tale of lost love and the end of a cheating relationship. No more second chances.
'Moonshine' is very sweet in tone and reminds me so much of a very early Taylor Swift. The lead vocal on this track sounds young, so I'm guessing that it's Hannah. It's a love song co-written with Kelsea Ballerini. “Moonshine, don’t wanna see daylight cause the way you’re hitting his blue eyes, making me wanna, keep it going”
The Morris sisters know how to create very catchy radio friendly songs and 'This Song' is another very good example. It would be very much at home on any Country music playlist. 'Living Like That' is super catchy and has a terrifically bouncy chorus that will get stuck in your head on a loop after just one listen. It's a song the will tempt you to buy a convertible, head over to the US and cruise down the open roads .
The fun partytime rocking 'Cowboys' is up next. Soft picked banjo over rock percussion building to a lovely electric guitar solo.
The album closes with the rocky 'I Ain't Crazy (But My Daddy Is)'. Southern Halo are great live and after a super cover of 'Sweet Child Of Mine' at their last London gig, it certainly cemented their rock credentials. They are so much more than a young Country pop-rock trio with great harmonies, they are excellent musicians as well. Judging by this very impressive debut album, we think Southern Halo will have a great future in music ahead of them. Definitely one's to watch and hopefully at C2C at the O2 in London in 2018.