Rusted Root seems to change their music from album to album while keeping true to what has made them successful. Stereo Rodeo is no exception. There is a definite shift in style, but I can still tell it's Rusted Root. The change in style is not a bad thing, and I suppose it's less of a style change than style honing.
The cover of Suspicious Minds is fantastic. The saxophone is unexpected but fits perfectly. Dance In The Middle is a nice throwback evoking memories of the Cruel Sun album and seems to be Root's token country pounder (Rain, Virtual Reality, Kill You Dead). Bad Son is a good and not-at-all subtle political rocker. Perhaps my favorite part of the album is the bookmarking of the mellow Stereo Rodeo with the Santana-esque jams Driving One and Driving Two.
Overall, the album is great. Probably 4.5 stars, but I'll throw in the extra .5 star versus taking it away. The album may lack some jams and is a bit slower than previous Root, but this fine band continues to make good music, even in the face of constant band member changes. I can tell that the style honing is due to the loss of some band members and the addition of new ones.
I recommend Stero Rodeo. You will quickly be adding a handful of these songs to your mp3 player.