IV and the Strange Band, fronted by Hank Williams' great grandson, Coleman Williams (IV), release their Shooter Jennings-produced second studio album, Hang Dog.
Turning heads with his first album, Southern Circus in 2022, IV celebrated his return to Nashville and embraced his family's musical legacy. Born Coleman Finchum, IV comes from a line of country music icons, including Hank Williams (his great grandfather), Hank Williams Jr. (his grandfather), and father, Hank III. Now, with Hang Dog, IV's music takes a new direction with impressive songwriting, a variety of musical styles, and expansive arrangements. This album not only delves deeper into IV's personal and musical journey but also showcases his ability to balance tradition and innovation in his unique contribution to music history.
IV describes Hang Dog as a concept album centered around appreciating the moments and people who help us navigate life's challenges. He also touches on the moments when life tests us and emphasizes that seeking help is not a weakness. The album is dedicated to his old dog, Piper, who was his companion during his twenties and a significant source of support. IV believes that even during tough times, we can find happiness if we hang on, as life isn't always easy. A "hang dog" expression doesn't mean being sad about life; it can also signify using life's difficulties to build character.
The album kicks off with the title track, featuring IV's haunting vocals, sharp guitar riffs, and emotive pedal steel. The song "If The Creek Don’t Rise" follows, with fiddle-heavy, western swing influences. "The Bleed" is a reflective and sparse tune with a cautionary message about trying to help someone who won't help themselves. "Septic" showcases the band's musical diversity, mixing roots-inspired twang with IV's reminiscences of a kind neighbor from his past. The album concludes with a lively honky-tonk-tinged cover of Bad Brains' "Sailin On."