Wow, where the hell did this one come from all of a sudden? Seems like Dave Smalley got an energy boost from playing shows with DYS and just churned out a new Down By Law album while he was at it. Even better yet, the first Down By Law album since 2003 is a fun one and just what I need to get my Friday started.
“Bullets” gets to open the dance… it’s a vintage Down By Law song and along with “Popcorn & Coke” and “” it wouldn’t have looked out of place on any of their classic albums. “Knock This Town” comes with a Stiff Little Fingers vibe and the folky vibe that’s been introduced on “Fly The Flag” is still present in tracks like “Tiny Answers” and “Warriors United”. A couple of others on here aren’t quite up to par with the rest (“Crystals”) but all in all “Champions At Heart” is another solid addition to the band’s already impressive back catalog and a nice return to form after nine years of near silence.