Slow burn songs stand front and center on Blood, the new LP from country champions The Roseline. The follow-up to 2015’s Townie showcases Colin Halliburton’s grace and wisdom with tales of small town life and love (along with his subtle philosophies; I would be remissed to pigeonhole his songwriting into a narrow category when he clearly has a message that can travel far and wide). I swear it’s not at all corny like my description, dear reader. Maybe I’m just being sentimental in the presence of a record with such genuine feeling.

Halliburton’s heartfelt lyrics mix with heartache and go down smooth. His experiences are never blunt or delivered with a demand for attention. He’s a master storyteller that draws you in and leaves you hanging on every word until a song fades away as gently as it started. If anyone knows patience is a virtue, it’s Halliburton, but he also knows it pays off in a big way. Blood never rushes, just staying at the same calm, collected pace to illicit a toe-tap or light head nod while listening. That’s truly rewarding in a lot of ways; the lyrics are so vivid and relatable it’s difficult to not get lost in them. And from a producing standpoint, the layering is incredible. The warm hum of saxophone on “Moving In A Dress;” the soft strum of “Tennis Tan” and its cascading keys; the violin on “Nocturnal;” the gentle vocal harmonies throughout. The Roseline have become the ambassadors from our rowdy, reckless youth to getting our shit together. Of course no one is perfect and those pangs of prior mistakes pop up all over the album. But we can strive for something more and Blood runs deep and true.

Favorite Tracks: “Tennis Tan,” “How To Be Kind,” & “Junonia”

Editor’s note: The Roseline play their album release show this Saturday at the Replay with Toughies and Jasper.



Nathan has contributed to I Heart Local Music since November 2012. He lives in Kansas City, MO.

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