DISClaimer: Jennifer Nettles, The Band Perry Offer Charming New Tracks

Jennifer Nettles

Jennifer Nettles

It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.

Today’s stack of platters contained two of the finest singles I’ve heard all year. It also held some true audio stinkers.

Those two “finest” singles finished in a tie for Disc of the Day. They belong to The Band Perry and to Jennifer Nettles. Both are essential listening. I wish there was a dead heat as cool as this one in every listening session.

There are several first timers in the stack. But none of them sounded compelling enough to crown with a DisCovery Award. Better luck next week.

ANDY ROSS & LITTLE TEXAS/Back on the Backroads
Writers: Andy Ross/Porter Howell/Brady Seals; Producers: Porter Howell/Doug Grau; Publishers: Buck Shot/Writer’s List/Gypsy Quilt, BMI/ASCAP; Buck Shot (CDX)
– Jaunty, bouncy and just a teeny bit funky. A true toe tapper.

THE BAND PERRY/Comeback Kid
Writers: Kimberly Perry/Reid Perry/Neil Perry; Producers: Benny Cassette, Kimberly Perry, Reid Perry & Neil Perry; Publishers:Sony-ATV Countryside/Pearlfeather/Famdamily/When I Go to the Moon, BMI; Mercury/Interscope (CDX)
– Very melodic and loaded with winsome charm. The harmonies are heavenly, the track is super inventive and the lyric is something special. I’m in. Who’s with me?

 

JEREMY BOWMAN/Like A Song on the Radio
Writers: Juan (Johnny) Garcia/Charlie Allen/Dave Gibson/Jay Brunswick; Producer: Johnny Garcia; Publishers: Busy at Play/The Beer’s Still Cold/Swat, BMI; Funky Cowboy
– The chunky, funky track and its cool backbeat are way more interesting than the pedestrian lyric. Plus, his singing voice is kinda oaf-ish.

JENNIFER NETTLES/Hey Heartbreak
Writers: Sara Haze/Shane McAnally/Jimmy Robbins; Producer: Dann Huff; Publishers: Songs of Universal/House of Sea Gayle/Highway 508/Clearbox Rights, ASCAP; Big Machine (track)
– Extremely catchy. The burbling beat, her soaring delivery and the hooks-a-plenty choruses are all first rate. Wildly listenable on every level.

 

GRACIE METHENY/Unspeakable
Writer: Gracie Metheny; Producer: Gracie Metheny; Publisher: none listed; GM (CDX)
– You sing flat, dearie. I think you’re trying to say something in this lyric, but the mix is so muddy it’s hard to figure out what.

LARRY GATLIN & THE GATLIN BROTHERS/Stand Up and Say So
Writer: Larry Gatlin; Producers: Larry Gatlin, Steve Gatlin & Rudy Gatlin; Publishers: Terrengat LLC, BMI; Gatlin (CDX)
– Unrelentingly negative, with a peppy rhythm track.

 

DARYLE SINGLETARY/We’re Not Going to Hell for Having a Hell of a Time
Writers: Greg Hudik; Producer: Greg Hudik; Publisher: Double Dos Platinum, BMI; Platinum (CDX)
– Country, country, country. His bent-note phrasing, the steel-guitar backing, the twang production and the honky-tonk lyric are all classic sounding.

JON PARDI/Dirt On My Boots
Writers: Rhett Akins/Jesse Frasure/Ashley Gorley; Producers: Bart Butler/Jon Pardi; Publishers: EMI Blackwood/Brooks Country Boy/Rio Bravo/Telemitry/Combustion Engine/Sadie’s Favorite/WB, BMI/ASCAP; Capitol Nashville (track)
-After a hard day’s farm labor, he’s going out for a good time with his honey. The melody is rather choppy, awkward and odd, but his drawling delivery is right on the money.

KEVIN MAC/#Winning
Writers: Kevin Mack/Neal Coty; Producers: Keith Stegall/Larry Goetz/John Kelton; Publishers: Where Da Kasz At/Laughing Gull, BMI; Dreamlined/Star Farm (CDX)
– Boyishly bopping with a vintage pop feel.

 

RICK TREVINO/Cowboys Like Me
Writers: Rick Trevino/Alan Miller; Producer: Rick Trevino; Publishers: Luke & Live/Miller’s Tale, BMI/ASCAP; Campo Negro (CDX)
– The breezy track shuffles along nicely. His soft, breathy vocal never quite gets on top of it, but it’s still easy on the ears.

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About the Author

Robert K. Oermann is a longtime contributor to MusicRow. He is a respected music critic, author and historian.

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