Almeria Club

Almeria Club

by Hank Williams Jr.


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Almeria Club

Built in 1907, Troy, Alabama's Almeria Club has undergone numerous reincarnations during its 94-year history, from honky-tonk to community center to schoolhouse. As a honky-tonk, its illustrious history includes a night in 1947 when gunplay erupted during a performance by Hank Williams, prompting Hank and his wife to leap out a window and retreat to safety in the surrounding woods. In 2001, Hank Williams Jr. visited the site of his parents' narrow escape and turned the place into a recording studio. There must be some great vibes in the Almeria, because the album Hank Jr. came up with hearkens back to his greatest solo work. The sizzling opening track, "Last Pork Chop," with its wailing twin guitars, evokes memories of the classic Hank Williams Jr. and Friends album from 1976, whereas an acoustic reprise of that same song in a Delta blues-style arrangement brings to mind the ferocity of the unplugged set Hank performs on his powerhouse Live at Cobo Hall album. The romping, stomping "Almeria Jam" sounds like the great lost Charlie Daniels Band workout, with its frenetic fiddle firing up the whole deal. "Tee Tot Song," inspired by the black guitarist who taught Hank Sr. all about the guitar and the blues, is a loving, toe-tapping, blues-drenched tribute piece that kicks off a white-hot, album-ending trifecta, including "Cross on the Highway," a wrenching gospel homage to a fallen friend (Derrick Thomas, the late Kansas City Chiefs linebacker), and a near-five-minute topical rewrite of "Country Boy Can Survive," now recast as "America Will Survive," more somber and less knee-jerk than its country cousin original, but no less resolute in its affirmations: "There's no more Yankees and Rebels this time/but one united people that stand behind/America will survive," Hank emotes in his best no-nonsense baritone as the music surges behind him. Hank means business from first cut to last here, and this rediscovered fortitude makes Almeria Club a scintillating long player in a career that has produced more than a handful of same.

Product Details

Release Date: 01/08/2002
Label: Curb Records
UPC: 0715187872523
catalogNumber: 78725
Rank: 61650

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Almeria Club 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The best songs write in 7years
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the best CD Hank Jr. has put out in years. Real Hank again, his words, his music. Although no one song stands out as a chart topper, for Hank Jr. fans the whole CD will please. Cross on the highway is a great tribute, and makes you realize that ever cross has a story and a life behind it. Thunderhead Hawkins should do a blues album, I am sure it would sell well.