MOJO MAGAZINE (London) | by Bob Mehr, August 2006

Album Review

  Led by American roots veterans Dave Gonzalez (The Paladins) and Chris Gaffney (Dave Alvin’s Guilty Men), the Hacienda Brothers were formed with the explicit goal of exploring the common ground between honky-tonk and R&B.  Like last year’s aponymous debut, this is helmed by Southern soul legend Dan Penn and the group pays him tribute, turning his Box Tops classic "Cry Like A Baby" into a simmering accordion groover and re-imagining the Percy Sledge gutcheck "It Tears Me Up" as a hillbilly lament.  Gaffney – his voice a haunted, expressive husk – puts his stamp on challenging fare like Charlie Rich’s "Life’s Little Ups And Downs;" elsewhere, Gonzalez pens everything from authentic sawdust-floor shuffles to cinematic Morricone twang.