This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):
Even roots-rock fans may not know Greg Trooper by name. But I bet some know him by song.
This Nashville songwriter’s tunes have been tackled by a who’s who of troubadours — Steve Earle cut Little Sister, Billy Bragg covered Everywhere and Vince Gill handled We Won’t Dance. So you know Trooper is doing something right. On his fifth solo CD, he’s doing plenty right. Straight Down Rain is a tremendous set of expertly crafted, darkly textured roots masterpieces with honest emotions, thoughtful lyrics and solid choruses. Whether he’s delivering broken-heart country (Real Like That, with Julie Miller lending vocals), edgy roots-rawk (the noisy Doghouse) or jangly roots-pop (Trampoline) in his warm voice, Trooper augments his influences — guys like Bob Dylan, Warren Zevon, Lyle Lovett, Woody Guthrie, John Prine and Tom Waits — with an originality that makes you understand why everybody wants to sing his songs. And his praises.