Angaleena Presley - American Middle Class
It’s gotta be a little tough being Angaleena Presley. The least well known member of country super group Pistol Annies - alongside mega-selling Queen of all things country Miranda Lambert and Ashley Monroe (who has a well-received album of her own with a highly-anticipated second on the way) - Presley has very little public profile, but that’s all about to change. The Kentucky native has made a clever record that sits nicely in the same space as the top tier of female country performers like Lambert, Brandy Clark, and Kacey Musgraves and while it may not make her a household name, she definitely steps out of the shadows of her more successful bandmates.
A smart and sassy debut, American Middle Class tackles many of the regular themes of modern country, with that most modern of views - the female perspective. Presley mixes tales of everyday mundanity (the lush ‘Grocery Store’ with its pining guitar riffs; the sarcastic ‘Knocked Up’) with a title track ode, bookended by her own father discussing the life of a coal miner. Though it might lack some of the humour and lyrical wit of the Lambert’s and Musgraves’ of the world, Presley writes with her heart on her sleeve and this impressive effort is filled with plenty of steel guitar, banjo, and country authenticity to go with its blue collar stories.