From what I’ve observed, most college-aged people have a fiery passion against country music and everything for which it stands. Although there’s never been a study, I imagine at least 75 percent of music preferences listed on Facebook.com read, “anything but country.” Don’t get me wrong, I am well aware there are country music fans out there, but we are few and far between.
In the past years, few artists have bridged the gap between country and pop, but we all know it can be done. Recently, if you listen to Kiss FM or other national pop radio stations, you have probably heard Rascal Flatts’ new single, “What Hurts the Most.”
This single on its own has seemed to give the band its final shove into a full-blown crossover in music genres. Although some may be fairly excited for the new addition to the pop scene, after listening to their new album “Me and My Gang,” you’ll find you just can’t take the country out of some groups.
Most of the album, like their previous three, is fairly safe listening. Most of the songs are not overly twangy, but they do embody the stereotypical ideals of, “I lost my house, dog, girl and pick-up truck – and now I think I’ll write a song about it.”
Fortunately, these guys don’t take themselves too seriously. With the track “Backwards,” they mock the very concept I mentioned before. According to the song, you’ll “get your house back, your dog back, you’ll get your best friend Jack back, you’ll get your truck back.. But that’s what you get when you play a country song backwards.”
The released single is a pretty catchy ballad, but doesn’t shine out extraordinarily compared to the rest of the album. Most of the tracks are quality and grow on you quickly.
Compared to their previous singles and albums, I find “Me and My Gang” to be a bit solemn. Most of the tunes are much more mellow and focused on loss or heartbreak, like the song “Pieces.” For something different, the trio tries out a beachy-feel complimented with just-sweet-enough lyrics in their single, “Yes I Do.”
The group’s variation of instruments and simple harmonies will surely please any country lover and most likely several people who limit themselves to the pop genre.
We can expect several singles from the album, but they probably all won’t make it to Kiss FM.
Tracks to download: “Yes I Do” and “What Hurts The Most”
3 out of 5 rams
Hailey McDonald can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org