AUDIE BLAYLOCK & REDLINE, “Hard Country,” Rural Rhythm. 10 tracks.

Audie Blaylock’s new album may be called “Hard Country,” but with that strong banjo lead on several tracks, it’s definitely bluegrass.

Blaylock says he chose the “Hard Country” name because “I think it really defines the music on this disc. It still has that hard-driving bluegrass edge, then changes into slower-paced ballad type songs as well, which really show cases the versatility of this band. It also shows just how closely bluegrass and country music are related.”

The kind of country that most radio stations play has moved far away from bluegrass, which has been moving closer to where country music was in the 1950s and ’60s.

Blaylock captures that feel with his version of Ira Louvin’s “Stormy Horizon’s,” a ballad with a classic country sound.

Maybe the country part of the album is the 10 songs featured rather than the 12 or more tracks that bluegrass albums generally feature.

The cover art features a fire motif with both a guitar and a microphone engulfed in flames. And there’s a lot of fiery picking on songs like “A Real Good Way To Lose” and the instrumental, “Newton’s Grove.”

The first single, Harley Allen’s “A Natural Thing,” is an uptempo song about how a person’s life can change in a minute when they meet the right someone.

Blaylock wrote two tracks, “The Chair,” a song about a man who makes a rocking chair for his finance because he can’t afford a wedding ring, and “A Grandmother’s Love,” a ballad about a grandmother whose Bible-reading and prayers are remembered long after her death.

The album includes a mix of uptempo songs and ballads.

Allen’s “Home Is Where The Heart Is” is a ballad about a man who leaves his heart at home when he travels, “14 Days” tells the story of a man who’s been gone for two weeks and is missing the woman he left behind and “On The Road” is about a trucker who longs for a home.

Band members featured on the album include Jesse Brock, Patrick McAvinue, Russ Carson and Jason Moore.

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