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Tag Archive 'Country-Pop'

“At its core, Bringing Back the Sunshine is a middlebrow makeout record that can double as a fine morning tonic. Nothing here rocks (although the closing ‘Just Gettin’ Started’ tries to work up a full head of steam), nothing is gritty, even the ode to a ‘Good Country Song,’ which isn’t a slice of hardcore […]

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Trisha Yearwood: Prizefighter

“Yearwood has had more than ten hits — and she’s also had no fewer than five compilations — but the hits here are well chosen (‘She’s in Love with the Boy,’ ‘How Do I Live,’ ‘Wrong Side of Memphis,’ and ‘The Song Remembers When’ are all here), and the new songs are solid enough to […]

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Garth Brooks: Man Against Machine

“From its beefy arena rock arrangements to its preponderance of power ballads, this is an album constructed from remnants of the golden age of the diamond album, a cross-demographical blockbuster that’s now a bit of accidental narrowcasting. This is for audiences who wish they made country records like they used to — not when Hank, […]

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Florida-Georgia Line: Anything Goes

” Despite the loosey-goosey title, there’s not much left to chance on Anything Goes: it’s designed to consolidate Florida Georgia Line’s success and maybe give them a little bit of cred they never amassed on their debut. Those serious moments, crystallized by the salt-of-the-earth dirgey lead single ‘Dirt,’ are where FGL stumble. Whenever the duo […]

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“The new songs are a nice touch, but the real purpose of this set is to offer casual fans a way to get all of Brooks’ best-known hits in one package, and in that regard The Ultimate Hits not only succeeds, it’s long overdue.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“A quarterback-turned-country songwriter-turned-country star, Sam Hunt never makes apologies for his inherent bro-ness on his 2014 debut Montevallo….Hunt’s ability to fuse his classical construction with modern flair and pass it off as no big thing is what makes his debut something more than just another album from the bro next door.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog […]

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“The third and last of the Pistol Annies to deliver her own solo record, Angaleena Presley operates on a more intimate scale than either Miranda Lambert or Ashley Monroe. Lambert trades on her bravado, Monroe on her savviness, but Presley relies on subtlety on American Middle Class, her long-awaited 2014 solo debut….This is a rich, deceptively relaxed portrait of working-class life in America in 2014 and it will linger […]

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“Tim McGraw is an eccentric centrist who can dodge the headlock of country-radio culture….Per usual, the character studies shine brightest. Proof: ‘Sick of Me,’ a self-loathing take-me-back plea – a reminder that, like Bill Clinton, another great Southern centrist, McGraw is best when he’s feeling your pain.” –Rolling Stone Check Our Catalog Listen Now

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Lady Antebellum: 747

“Give Lady Antebellum credit: There’s a consistency to its songs that makes the group as much a manufacturing concern as it is a country act.” –Boston Globe Check Our Catalog

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“Platinum is notable because Lambert tries to be everything to everyone here and damn near succeeds….[A]t its heart, this is a classic double-album where the misses enhance the home runs and, eventually, are endearing on their own terms.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“[I]t is neither a bluegrass nor pop record but rather splits the difference, touching upon each sound, along with threading in other signatures….[T]he remarkable thing is how satisfying an album this is: it sounds good and the songs are sturdy, proof that Parton is far from resting on her laurels.” –All Music Guide Check Our […]

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“Everlasting is the second collection of covers Martina McBride has recorded, following 2005’s Timeless by nearly ten years. A decade isn’t the only thing separating the two records. Timeless was a collection of country covers but Everlasting has soul in its heart….There’s warmth in [Don] Was’ production and honey in McBride’s voice.” –All Music Guide […]

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“Evans elegantly matches the oversized arrangements, matching each crescendo and hushed moment, while the songs are cannily constructed pieces of pop, sounding stronger with each play….Slow Me Down is something that is rare in 2014: an unapologetic, big-scale adult pop album, constructed with grace and care.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Nail’s gifts suggest he’s a blue-collar patriot, a working man happy to churn out anthems for the unsung, but he’s a bit more subtle than that, identifying exceptional songwriters and never succumbing to the good-time bro-country that is a golden ticket to the top of the charts….[I]t’s a grower, sounding better with repeated exposure, repeated […]

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“This wonderful archival Patti Page release is drawn from recording sessions Page did for Columbia Records between 1963 and 1969, but then never officially released….[I]t amounts to a fair amount of material, and a treasure trove at that. This is indeed a welcome addition to the Page legacy.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Jennifer Nettles: That Girl

“That Girl is Jennifer Nettles’ first solo record since she co-founded pop-country’s superstar act Sugarland. Produced by Rick Rubin, it’s mostly a collection of originals, co-written with some of the music industry’s most successful songwriters….That Girl was obviously designed to showcase her diversity as a vocalist and songwriter, and to cross over to a pop […]

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“Florida Georgia Line… broke onto the contemporary country scene in the spring of 2012 with the infectious summer single ‘Cruise,’ a song that blended cruising country back roads and farm towns with ragged drums and layers of rock guitar….The duo seems poised for stardom going into the second decade of the 21st century, a time […]

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“See You Tonight works, partially due to the Rogers-shepherded collection of cheerful country-pop but also due to the malleability of McCreery’s dude-next-door persona. That his surroundings are lighter and brighter than before only accentuates how McCreery’s happy to be here, so he’s happy to sing songs that will keep him here.” –All Music Guide Check […]

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Keith Urban: Fuse

“Fuse, Keith Urban’s first album in three years, delivers a slicker, more sophisticated version of his solitary demo recording process as a radical sounding change in direction. Throughout, he melds drum machines, synths and samplers with his guitars, banjos, mandolins and voice….Urban manages to fashion it all into a (mostly) working whole and maintain his […]

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“[I]t shines, capturing Rimes at her best as a pure country singer, a neo-rockabilly filly, a savvy crossover pop artist, and an understated troubadour who knows how to camouflage her emotions underneath it all….[A]ll the music on Spitfire resonates, every song suggesting an avenue Rimes could pursue the next time out.” –All Music Guide Check […]

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