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Los Lonely Boys

Sacred (Epic)

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It's hard to believe it's been only two years since the release of Los Lonely Boys' self-titled debut. Lauded for its combination of blues-guitar riffs, Latin rhythms, and vocal harmonies, the disc launched a sensation centering on the Boys' first single, "Heaven," in spite of the song's vanilla lyrics and mediocre pop hook.

Sacred finds the brothers Garza embracing heavier blues riffs, but the result is much the same. Songs like the opening "My Way," the Santana-inspired "Oye Mamacita," and the Eric Clapton-influenced "Roses" feature sublime blues hooks and Latin percussion, but lyrically, the songs border on cliché. In fact, the lyrics are weak throughout Sacred. The '70s rock riffs and melody of "One More Day" are wasted on run-of-the-mill reflections about the state of the world, lacking insight or introspection. The raucous "Outlaws" -- which features Willie Nelson -- is a near-miss that recalls Waylon Jennings and his ilk musically, but with sentiments that sound forced and pretentious.

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