Tylor and the Train Robbers’ Non-Typical Find

By Brian Rock

Tylor and the Train Robbers ride again on their third release, Non-Typical Find. Still rolling with their earthy, rustic Americana sound; this time they add a bit of piano, banjo, and a few flourishes of mandolin to add an extra layer of texture. As much as their previous release was all about wanderlust, this album is about reflection. Like many touring bands affected by Covid, Tylor and the Train Robbers (TTR) were forced to stop playing live shows. Suddenly stationary, the road warriors finally had a moment to stop and reflect on life, love and lemonade (among other topics).

“Equation of Life,” sets the tone for the album. With a gently rollicking backbeat, acoustic guitar propels the song forward as band leader, Tylor Ketchum sings, “When you spend time well, you get back time well spent.” Realizing that memories are more important than career goals, TTR urge us to slow down and savor the moment. Steel guitar and mandolin help set the mood as Ketchum waxes philosophical. He encourages us to see the big picture, because, “Some things never change. But then again, they might.”

With a voice that conveys experience greater than the sum of his years, Ketchum is a quintessential singing cowboy. Part Joe Ely, and part Arlo Guthrie, his voice is honest and familiar and as comforting as a well-worn leather coat. Paired with his band’s impeccable ear for Americana rhythms, TTR are among the best of their genre.

“This Town” showcases the band’s synergy. A gliding, Marty Stuart style Honky-Tonk number; the song uses electric guitar, Hammond organ and steel guitar to sing the praises of the small towns we call home. Even when we leave them, Ketchum knows, “like a boomerang I’ll keep coming back around.” Cascading piano notes highlight the “Walk a Mile in My Shoes” introspection of “Worth the While;” where they remind us, “You can see things a whole lot better after tearing down a wall.” “Something Better,” also urges us to consider our brothers and sisters, especially those who struggle. “Back The Other Way,” is a Country Noir exploration of the power of fear. “Lemonade” offers a twist on the “when life gives you lemons…” adage. With banjo and steel guitar accompaniment, Ketchum confesses that he has been the lemon in the lives of those he cares about. Singing, “With all excuses and equal blame, my song’s the same until I change my tune. Son, I hope this letter finds you well and time will help to heal this wound,” he realizes the pain he has caused others and hopes they can, “find some sweetened water for to pour these lemons on.”

TTR capture chooglin’ train rhythms to offer a cautionary tale about hitchhiking on, “Non-Typical Find.” Turning personal, Ketchup addresses two ballads to his wife. “Jenny Lynn,” is a mandolin laced ballad about the pain of being away from his wife when he’s on the road. “These Eyes,” combines subtle Bluegrass and Celtic rhythms to celebrate the intimacy that exists between a man and a wife. Singing, “When you’re looking like a mess, that’s how I know it ain’t no ordinary day. ‘Cause you’re always fixed up like a queen and I’m the only one that’s seen this side of you;” Ketchum perfectly captures that bond that allows us to let down our mask for the only person on earth we truly trust.

Finishing the set, “Silver Line” is an extended metaphor that compares silver linings with the silver fishing line of a trusted rod and reel. Capturing an Arlo Guthrie, Folk feel, TTR celebrate the simple things in life like fishing, gardening, and talking with neighbors. With so many memorable melodies, lyrics and stories, this album, like the band itself, is indeed a “Non-Typical Find.”  |  fb  |  buy

Brian Rock

Brian Rock

Brian was raised gypsy style, moving every other year until well after college. As friendships proved to be temporary, Brian found a constant companion in music, wearing the grooves off Beatles and Dylan albums before moving on to Lyle Lovett and Dwight Yokam. Living so often in flux, he has come to value music and lyrics of lasting quality. Not moved by trends or fashion, he is drawn to timeless lyrics and soulful rhythms. Although now settled down, Brian still expresses his gypsy spirit through his writing. He has co-written songs with musician friends he’s met along the way, including several contributions to the 2012 ICMA Album of the Year, Family Album. Brian also writes children’s books and poems, including the Children’s Book Council featured title, The Deductive Detective.
Brian Rock

Latest posts by Brian Rock (see all)

Comments are closed.