By Dusty Ray
The cover of Mosey West’s first release, Vaca Money, is a giant Mason jar filled with milk. And it is a perfect representation of the album: cloudy, smooth and refreshing. The band has an amazing songwriting ability, capturing a slight alt-country sound along with catchy hooks and some deep lyricism. All of the members play a huge role in Vaca Money: The trio is well-balanced, and no song overstays its welcome.
The album opens up strong with “Lonesome River.” A harmonica drives the melody along, and the track moseys on by like the river of its namesake. It is a fitting opener, and reveals some of the tricks up the band’s sleeves, but they throw you for a loop with “Cold Prediction,” a more emotional song that pulls its punches with an almost tortured vocal delivery and a straight blues feel.
“Stone by Stone” shuffles along as a distinctly bluegrass influenced track which is contrasted by the final track “Crystal Fire,” a song which starts out very folksy and closes with a punk-influenced build up; a strong and fitting close to a varied album.
Though Vaca Money is brief, and ends too soon, Mosey West’s ability to completely change their style between songs while still sounding unique is impressive. With Adam Brown and Mike McGraw sharing vocal as well as songwriting work on the album, different tastes and influences reveal themselves. It is the inherent equality of the band members that makes Vaca Money a success. It is a breath of fresh air from the convoluted genre of “alt-country.”