Rank and File ‘Sundown’


Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#795 in the Series) is Rank and File, Sundown.

I’m not sure how many of you know this band, or much less this album.

Rank and File had a pretty unique sound. “Cowpunk” was the term used to describe their music. I’ve also heard “Country-Punk.” Whatever you want to call them, make sure you have “fun” somewhere in the mix.

Alejandro Escovedo was in the band. He’s gone on to a fine solo career and is probably more popular than ever.

The best songs here? Check out “Amanda Ruth,” “I Went Walking,” “Coyote” and what I think is their best tune, ‘The Conductor Wore Black.”

This had been quite hard to find for the longest time. Luckily for Rank and File fans it has been re-released by Rhino Records as part of a “Two-fer” release along with their second album titled Long Gone Dead. The re-release is titled The Slash Years.

It was hard for me to find many videos of Rank and File. I did find some from the album along with a a couple of live performances and even a decent interview taken from the Alan Thicke show back in ’83.  They’re in the playlists below.

Rank and File deserved a better fate. I guess this music was just too unique that radio station’s music directors just didn’t know what to do with it. It also just missed the beginning of the MTV boom. That could have made the difference.

Track listing

All songs by Chip Kinman and Tony Kinman except as indicated.

Side one

  1. Amanda Ruth (3:10)
  2. (Glad I’m) Not In Love (2:29)
  3. Rank and File (Escovedo, Kinman, Session, Miller) (4:52)
  4. The Conductor Wore Black (3:33)

Side two

  1. Sundown (3:04)
  2. I Went Walking (2:57)
  3. Lucky Day (3:42)
  4. I Don’t Go Out Much Anymore (2:17)
  5. Coyote (5:05)


  • Chip Kinman – guitar, vocals, harmonica
  • Tony Kinman – bass, vocals
  • Slim Evans – drums
  • Alejandro Escovedo – guitar, vocals


The  live goodies are below.

Posted by Larry Carta

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