On Dec. 8, country super-star, Luke Bryan, released his first album of 2017 titled, “What Makes You Country.” The album follows the release of “Light It Up,” which has been the lead single of the long-awaited album and a radio hit all summer long.
The album, which contains 15 tracks, has a variety of song choices relating to love, drinking, and growing up in the country. This is fitting considering the title of album discusses what true country is.
The tracks “Drinking Again” and “Hungover In A Hotel Room” bring up the topic of alcohol as do his oldies from 2009, “Rain Is a Good Thing” and “Drinkin’ Beer and Wastin’ Bullets.” Other tracks on his new album suggest the always popular talk of love in country music such as, “Light It Up” and “Bad Lovers.”
The most impactful track on the record, “Most People Are Good,” hits home the first time you hear it. Relating to our world right now, Bryan expresses how there are actually good people in the world and how not everything has to be centered around negativity. This track is similar to Tim McGraw’s hit, “Humble and Kind.”
His previous album, “Kill the Lights,” was one of his more successful releases, selling 345,000 copies in the first week of its release last August, so topping the past record will be difficult for Bryan.
Throughout the years, country music has changed immensely. The difference between classic country singles and the new “stadium country” sound can easily be heard. While Bryan’s sound has remained consistent since his early days, the types of songs that he writes and records has changed up quite a bit.
Bryan carries the same sound throughout all of his albums, that twang in his voice is able to be heard whether he is singing a love song or a dirt road anthem.
However, “What Makes You Country” includes that “stadium country” vibe, which I personally do not prefer. If you want more of a deep-country sound, check out his first few albums, “Doin’ My Thing” and “Tailgates and Tanlines.”
Being an avid country music listener, it is hard not to compare this album to past work. However, this is not his best work. Overall, I recommend listening to any of Bryan’s other albums before listening to this one. The others will not disappoint, but this one missed the mark by quite a bit.