Thursday, June 10, 2010

FP's Riskiest Post Yet

Today we endeavor to introduce to the site an album so unexpected. So unprecedented. So at the risk of getting our Brooklyn addresses revoked. We raise to the heavens, then lay at your feet: Need You Now by Lady Antebellum.

We ask only for three minutes.

Lady Antebellum is Americana, aka, light on moodiness, heavy on hope, and always, always twinged with yearning. It's open-road music -- in fact we dare you, dare you to toss a toothbrush into a bag, grab a friend, get a car, turn on "Our Kind of Love" or "Perfect Day" and let the windows down. Whether it's the breezy lyrics (Skipping rocks and leaving footprints/Down there on the riverbank/Always holding hands, never making plans/Just living in the moment babe) or Haywood's Hornsby-esque piano, you'll feel so much like you're in a movie, you'll look to the sky for the credits rolling over you (What I'd give if I could find a way to stay/Lost in this moment now/AIn't worried about tomorrow/When you're busy livin in a perfect day).

Lady Antebellum - Our Kind of Love

The trio of Charles Kelley, Dave Haywood and Hillary Scott have sung and played together in this group since 2006. They've received awards from the Academy of Country Music, the Country Music Association and they've been nominated for four Grammys (one of which they won). They achieved mainstream popularity with their self-titled first album, which was released in 2008 and eventually went platinum.

Yes, they're Top 40, but we've featured Top 40 before. We write about Lady Antebellum because, frankly, the poppy drunk-dial anthem "Need You Now" (It's a quarter after one/I'm a little drunk and I need you now/Said I wouldn't call but I lost all control/And I need you now) is on the radio all the time, and some of our most musically educated friends had no idea.

While this album is certainly light and digestible, it's definitely country. It twangs, it talks of white churches and Believing. "American Honey" and "Hello World" are slow-motion snippets that evoke places flat, quiet and straw-colored. "When You Got a Good Thing" reminds us that country music was created to make people get together and stay together, even if that coupling smells like Coors and barbecue. Like "Need You Now," "Love This Pain" is a mass-appeal, masochistic rally cry for love that isn't quite working.

Lady Antebellum - Need You Now

Lady Antebellum - When You Got a Good Thing

Not all songs are as memorable; "Stars Tonight" falls short of the superstar evocation for which it seems to be looking, and "Something 'Bout a Woman," even with its hoedown quality, loses us early.

If you're reading this blog, it's possible you aren't getting enough C&W exposure these days. Or any days for that matter. If nothing else, Lady Antebellum does its part to fill the country music space inside your heart. And if you don't have at least a little bit of fun with this album, well ... you can comment below.

ps! Thanks again to you who have become our fan on Facebook. If you haven't done so yet, you can here.

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