Washington DC area's Ruthie and the Wranglers have done it again. Their latest release, AMERICANA EXPRESS, packs 12 tracks with creativity, talent, and fun. The CD opens with the revved-up tune, 'In the Tank,' featuring a welcome collaboration of all three accomplished lyricists (Logsdon, Hardin and Starks). The band has grown to a 5-piece-bringing in piano and three-part harmonies. The group's diverse instrumentation and some special guests help satiate the band's desire to travel in some new directions. Accordion adds Tex-Mex flavor to 'Life and Death and Hope and Dreams,' a tune penned by Greg Hardin. 'SurfTango' shows guitarist Phil Mathieu's knack for thinking-outside-the-box and is a perfect follow up to the last CD's popular instrumental Surftilicus. On track eight, pianist Bill Starks adds his timely sing-along-anthem about staying 'one step ahead of the Repo Man' and 'The Last Word in Love' cries out to Bluegrass lovers with it's lonesome duo harmonies and Bluegrass musicians Akira Otsuka, Ronnie Simpkins and Ira Gitlin help set the tone. Ruthie's voice (along with her songwriting) has gracefully matured since their last release SOMEDAY (praised by The Washington Post as "songs vibrant or clever enough to make most of what passes for country music these days sound dead on arrival.") It's on track four, 'If I Could Turn Back Time'-Logsdon's powerful tribute to past mistakes-where we hear a new sound infusing the band. The intimate and striking 'Not to Love You' also resonates in the new direction. The Rock and Roll swing style of 'Ka-Ching,' the humor in 'I'm So Sad Since You Left Me' and the lament 'All the Honky Tonks are Closin' Down,' keep the album sparkling with diversity. It was her Rock 'n' Roll and Punk Rock influences that prompted Logsdon's infinite energy and drove her to want to perform, but it was her musical collaborators and her family that supplied her with the real foundation for a music career. AMERICANA EXPRESS contains two special tributes with Loretta Lynn's 'You Wanna Give Me a Lift' and Jimmie Logsdon's 'I Got a Rocket in My Pocket.' "Loretta Lynn has been my biggest influence and my third cousin Jimmie Logsdon's Rockabilly hit has always been a great rockin' crowd pleaser, so I felt compelled to include their songs. Ironically, my mother shares a birthday with Loretta Lynn and my father's traveling bible school teacher was Minnie Pearl. I couldn't skirt my Country roots even if I wanted to! And to keep it all in the family, my cousin Ken Perkins, an inspiration to me musically and artistically, contributed the CD cover illustration." --Ruthie After hearing the group's fifth album of collaborations packing depth, wit and unending charm, we're left wondering ... what will the next Ruthie and the Wranglers CD sound like?