Driven by determination and screw-it-all abandon, Branan's lyrics cut to the quick. There's usually a girl involved, with heartache, desperation and regret following close behind her. If the formula sounds tiring, it is -- but for all the right reasons. Now I'm whistling Dixie, spittin' teeth, Branan whispers in "Love Song 8." I can't shed this skin she's underneath.
There's little doubt that Branan's confessional songwriting style and brash delivery will conjure images of John Prine and Ryan Adams. But if the shoe fits, Branan will hit listeners over the head with it until they understand that it's his to wear.