Tim Montana


Music Knox Records / BBR Music Group / BMG Nashville
rating icon 8 / 10

Track listing:

01. Devil You Know
02. Savage
03. Ashes
04. Die Today
05. Shut Me Out
06. Right Again
08. Death Row
09. Ain't Comin' Down
10. Lovely
11. Day By Day

In the world of rock, there's certainly room for a downhome flavor, and  Tim Montana offers that perfect mix of hard rock with a dash of country flavor. Montana's brand of raw, dirty hard rock has taken him everywhere from performances on "The Late Show with David Letterman" to collaborations with Billy Gibbons of ZZ TOP to impressing the one and only Dave Grohl.

"Devil You Know", the lead track off Montana's new album, "Savage", soared up the rock and alternative charts in 2023. The song begins with soft acoustic guitars and brings Montana's raspy, full vocals to the forefront. Right away, what stands out about his vocals is his emotive, intense, personal-sounding delivery. It really feels as if he's singing just to you about his trials, emotions and adventures. Later in the song, the guitars and atmospheres swell to deliver a harder-hitting rock song, and while the effect is great, Montana most shines with sparce backings.

"Savage"'s title track is much like "Devil You Know", with acoustic guitars that make way for a larger, more anthemic sound later in the song. As Montana declares that "everything is savage," he shows off his hard rock roots with powerful rock vocals, and a voice reminiscent of a harder-edged, and slightly less tenor, Myles Kennedy.

As the album moves on, it delivers a more straight-ahead rock sound. "Die Today" and "GET YOU SOME" recall the post-grunge of bands such as SEETHER, SHINEDOWN and STAIND. "Die Today" features some wild-sounding wah-wahs courtesy of FOO FIGHTERS' guitarist Chris Shiflett. Montana calls the song, which is a tribute to the special-operator community, his version of ALICE IN CHAINS' "Rooster".

Elsewhere, "Lovely" brings a grungy number with messy guitars and a catchy hook. The album closes with "Day by Day", a reflective rock ballad that stylistically is very 1990s.

Listening to "Savage", it's apparent that Montana is an incredibly gifted musician, both when it comes to songwriting and performance. His sound is getting heavier, and it'll be fascinating to see where he goes from here.


Author: Anne Erickson
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