Rod Melancon must have spent many a twilight hour in creepy bayous, because Southern Gothic brings to life the stories of his childhood in the badlands and bayous of his home in a brilliant—albeit chilling—album.
In the spirit of Sturgill Simpson and Tom Petty, Melancon rocks his way through the land and the darker spirits who inhabit it, from a fun-loving hedonist to the man who was “born to fight” and die in prison, to the very Devil himself. Listening to the tales told and feeling the pulse of this album immerses the listener in the dark, and often twisted, night of the soul. The journey though the heart of darkness that is Southern Gothic may leave listeners unscathed, but not untouched.
Melancon told Elmore: “Promises was written with my friend and producer Brian Whelan. It was already pretty much done when I brought it to him. I remember my dad telling me that in his early 20s the first thing he’d do when he’d wake up is grab his pack of Mrlboros and have a smoke in bed. I always liked the image of that and it inspired the first lines of the song. The song is about the hopes and dreams of small town America. It’s about how you deal with the realization that those dreams won’t come to fruition. Football is an important part of the South and it offers an opportunity for more for those that are really great at it, tough one single injury can bring those dreams to a permanent standstill. That is what the character is dealing with in this song, accepting the fact that he must move on and forget about what could have been. That is all easier said than done.”