“Thinking about our last goodbye/I’m not sure who took the prize/I guess we both lost in the end”. That sentiment runs through Bucket‘s closer “Last Goodbye” as well as the album as a whole. From the Ryan Adam’s mold of rock music with Steve Earle lyrics comes Mando Saenz’s second album. Full of beer & heartache Bucket is a few rungs up the ladder from most of the albums you’ve worn out over the years when nursing a broken heart. The lyrical prize of the album has to go to “I’m way too cool to cry/And I’m way too young to die/I’m fine for now getting by/Somewhere in the back of your mind”, from “Somewhere In The Back Of Your Mind”. Heartache on display has rarely been put better. Opening with essentially the same song from two different points of view, the record makes no attempt to hide it’s “breakup album” status. “Wrong Guy” is Mando admitting that he’s probably not worth the trouble after all and “Pocket of Red” (a Kim Richey co-write) is the album’s significant other coming to terms with that same realization. Don’t worry though, it’s not all heartache here. “Seven Dollars”, an ode to last call bar hopping that you have to be broke to enjoy but when you are is Heavenly, perfectly captures the drink now think later mindset we all had in our drunken days of supposed higher learning and “I Don’t Like It” is just good old fashioned rock and roll. The world may be littered with the remains of God knows how many “breakup albums” but few this good. Bucket may be Mando Saenz’s cure for your blues, but it might just be good enough to make the blues worth it.
Staff Write Brandon M.
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