On the first track, “Heavy Pour,” we get a mix of classic rock riffs and party time lyrics. Lines like
“going out tonight, feelin’ mighty good, getting’ into trouble doing things we know we should”
set us up for a wild, no apologies night out. This song mentions enough of everyone’s favorite drinks that it’ll make you want to stop by your local watering hole immediately.
Next comes the title track of sorts, “I’m Southern But I Ain’t No Belle.” Along with the same guitar-heavy style of the first song comes an empowering I’m-not-what-the-stereotypes-say anthem. In case you were in doubt, Heather is enough of a bad girl that she says
“my grandma said I was goin’ to Hell.”
Hey, southern girls are nice but no push-overs.
Third track “Rodeo” is the song that gets everyone on the dance floor on a Saturday night. It has all the right ingredients for a country party tune: references to honky tonk, the right kind of beats, and of course word of a rodeo.
“Truckin‘” uses its title as well, a metaphor for something that rhymes. It takes the familiar theme of having romantic times in a truck and makes it more playful.
“Eighteen wheels, what a heavy machine, she was riding shotgun if you know what I mean,”
lyrics like that make the song not as subtle but still tongue-in-cheek and fun.
The ending track, “What You Reap You Sow,” is a warning about abusive men.
“You thought he was a good one, you thought he was a keeper, you thought he wouldn’t treat you like that creepy old preacher”
but the receiver of the message learned the hard way. The topic is unsettling, but country has never been afraid to go to the tough places.
“Ain’t No Belle” doesn’t slow down for one second of its play time with the music of a 1970s rock album, the lyrics of a popular country record, and the energy of both. These are five songs to enjoy at the bar or in your car.