This week, creativity trumps commerciality.
The folks with the most radio-ready tunes this week include Brantley Gilbert, Love and Theft and Uncle Kracker. But the artist with the single that is truly ground breaking and fresh sounding is Jerrod Niemann. For outstanding creativity and class, give that man a Disc of the Day.
None of the newcomers flipped my lid. So we have no DisCovery Award to present in this edition of “DisClaimer.”
JERROD NIEMANN/Only God Could Love You More
Writer: Jerrod Niemann/Lee Brice/Jon Stone; Producer: Dave Brainard & Jerrod Niemann; Publisher: Writers of Sea Gayle/Ozworth/Words & Music/Mike Curb/Sweet Hysteria/How Bout That Skyline/Songs From Ferry Street/BMG Chrysalis, BMI; Arista/Sea Gayle (track)
—This man is so creative. As if the songwriting wasn’t cool enough, the production is a brain-filling delight, full of tender percussion rumbling, vocal echoes, keyboard droplets and haunting silences. Essential listening.
BOBBY DEAN/You Can’t Drink ‘Em All
Writer: Culpepper/Culpepper/Neil; Producer: Dave Moody; Publisher: Songs from Americana Street/CDT Productions, BMI/ASCAP; Lamon (track)
—Country with a capital “K.” He has a drawl you can cut with a knife, and the band lays the fiddle and steel on thick. Not for the faint of heart.
BRANTLEY GILBERT/More Than Miles
Writer: John Eddie/Brantley Gilbert; Producer: Dann Huff; Publisher: WB/John Eddie/Warner Tamerlane/Indiana Angel, ASCAP/BMI; Valory Music (track)
—Driving away won’t cure his heartache, no matter how far he goes. The track has a rolling, churning quality that propels the song forward. His soft-yet-earnest vocal performance is perfectly shaded to the lyric. Very radio worthy.
ROY SOLIS/Sippin’ on a Six Pack
Writer: none listed; Producer: none listed; Publisher: none listed; Ave. 1 (www.roysolismusic.com)
—Thin sounding. I like the accordion, but the rest of the instrumental backing could use some oomph. His singing lacks lung power and hits the high notes flat. Pass.
LOVE AND THEFT/Runnin’ Out of Air
Writer: Matt Jenkins/Shane McAnally/Josh Osborne; Producer: Josh Leo; Publisher: Songs of Bims/Kobalt/Crazy Water/Little Blue Egg/Want a Fresh One/Black River, ASCAP; RCA (track)
—This is a change of pace from their “Angel Eyes” hit. It is a pop bopper with rhythm to spare. The compressed-sounding, rapid-fire vocal delivery is ear catching as well.
BILL McALISTER & I-57 SOUTH/Between Silver & Gray
Writer: William Alaric McAlister; Producer: Patrick T. Doody & Bill McAlister; Publisher: Palos Orland, ASCAP; Lane (track) (www.lanerecords.net)
—Very much is the shadow of Waylon Jennings, from the “outlaw” backbeat to his baritone vocal delivery. The lyric refers to the fact that he’s on the far side of 50. That’s okay. Music keeps you young.
COLT FORD/Answer to No One
Writer: C. Ford/S. Houchins/N. Gordon/M. Hartnett; Producer: Shannon Houchins, Noah Gordon & Mike Hartnett; Publisher: Average JZS/Mike Hartnett, BMI/ASCAP; Average Joes (track) (www.coltford.com)
—Name your poison: rap or rock. This has both, plus a dash of right-wing politics.
ANGEL MARY & THE TENNESSEE WEREWOLVES/Cowboy
Writer: Jean Picard-Ami/Angel Mary Picard-Ami/Christian Picard-Ami; Producer: Angel Mary & The Tennessee Werewolves; Publisher: none listed, BMI; Verado (CDX) (www.angelmary.net)
—Ya gotta love their name. The sound is rebel rocking with plenty of attitude. It would work a little better if she had more moxie in her delivery.
UNCLE KRACKER/Nobody’s Sad on a Saturday Night
Writer: M. Shafer/Shane McAnally/J.T. Harding; Producer: Keith Stegall; Publisher: Warner-Chappell/Gaje/Universal/Smack Ink/Little Blue Egg/Kobalt/SONGS/Mighty Seven/Songs of SMP/Heavy Metal Disco, BMI/ASCAP; EMI/Sugar Hill/Vanguard (CDX) (www.unclekracker.com)
—Infectious. Energetic. Cleverly written and sung with joyous abandon. Play it.
CHRIS COX/December in the Snow
Writer: Walt Wilder; Producer: Walt Wilder; Publisher: Taloga Leedy/Pactow, BMI; CMM (CDX) (405-751-2140)
—A vocal tremelo to drive a truck through.
- DISClaimer Single Reviews: Eric Church, Miranda Lambert, Brandy Clark - March 4, 2021
- DISClaimer Single Reviews: Niko Moon, Tenille Arts, Lainey Wilson, Dillon Carmichael - February 25, 2021
- DISClaimer Single Reviews: Ryan Hurd & Maren Morris, Taylor Swift, Walker Hayes - February 18, 2021