Listening to any effort from Eleven Hundred Springs, including latest Midway, is like having your cool uncle pull out his favorite albums. Matt Hillyer and the rest of the band have that old-school country sound down. When the band first formed way back in 1998, some people thought it was just guys imitating the sounds of Merle Haggard, George Jones and Hank Williams, but over the course of nine albums, Eleven Hundred Springs have developed into a tight unit of true believers. Songs like “I’m a S.O.B. (When I’m S-O-B-E-R)” and “Hard Work Just Ain’t Working Anymore” are not imitative of the band’s influences. They are authoritative narratives of rural America.
Eleven Hundred Springs shows a commitment to the true soul of country music — what Steve Earle calls real music. While they may not look like your conformist country (Disney Channel / reality show, etc) act, the tradition and spirit that make up true Americana is easy to see. It’s all about honesty and lack of pretense.