banner ad
banner ad
banner ad


| 1 February 2014 | 2 Replies


Label: Mercury Nashville

Release Date: January 14, 2014

Rating: 10/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

Some of my favorite albums (yes, I still call them albums) are so far from my typical listening fare, but a great album is a great album, regardless of the genre.  Jennifer Nettles has put Sugarland in her rear view mirror temporarily, but with the release of ‘That Girl,’ that isn’t a bad thing.  Forget the fact that her main gig is country, this lady also knows a little something about rock, folk, and R&B.  Besides her one off with Bon Jovi back on “Who Says You Can’t Go Home,” she has enlisted rockers to help out on this foray as well – lets see how many links we can make.  Veteran producer Rick Rubin (rock link #1) really allowed Jennifer to soar and come into her own as an artist and specifically as a vocalist.

The disc opens nicely with “Falling.”  The music is less country than it sounds at first; Nettles’ voice has that sound built in t it, but the song has a cool vibe built up by the percussion and the organ gives it a soulful edge.  “Moneyball” adds a quirky yet fun groove to the disc.  The twang in the vocals keeps the song rooted, but the percussion and guitars give this a fun sound.  Lead single and video track “That Girl” is a sultry track that allows Jennifer to stretch her vocals from smokey to soft and every where in between.  This track, co-written by Butch Walker (rock link #2) has a dark feel that builds through the chorus and really gives the disc an edgy feel that stands out.  “Jealousy” is a fun track that relies on the lyrical content as much as the music or vocals.  The guitar work is great and keeps this song moving nicely, but Nettles’ voice is the real star on this track.  The smoldering R&B feel to the vocals could help this track crossover to other genres and charts easily and successfully.  The rocking feel of “Know You Wanna Know” brings the disc to life and gives it an extra shot in the arm.  This track co-written by Richard Marx (rock link #3), gets hopping with killer piano from Ian Mclagan , but the uncharacteristic, yet excellent drumming of Chad Smith (yes THAT Chad Smith – rock link #4) really gives this song its pop and pizzazz.

Taking a mellow twist, “Me Without You” is an acoustic gem that features some cool percussion, played throughout the disc by legend Lenny Castro (rock link #5 – look him up).  Jennifer’s vocals really shine through on this track, as well as “This Angel.”  The latter features some great acoustic guitars that enhance the vocals.  “This One’s for You,” co-written by Sara Barielles, is another R&B tinged track that will appeal to fans of music in general, especially once Nettles’ cuts loose with her voice at various points during the song.  The piano and guitars are the perfect backdrop for this track.  “Thank You” slows the mood down a bit, but only to allow proper absorption of a great track that features superb vocals and their duet with a beautiful guitar piece, whereas “Good Time To Cry” focuses a bit more on piano, bass, and drums to fill the space underneath the vocals.  The song keeps things grounded and mellow while giving the disc a little more depth.  The only cover clsoes the disc, as Jennifer cover’s Bob Seger’s “Like A Rock” (rock link #6).  This isn’t the version you are familiar with… yet!  Nettles and here band really put their own spin on this rocker that gives the listener another reason to appreciate the song in general.  This bluesy take on the original really stands out among a disc full of killer tracks.

Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

Leave a Reply

Please verify you\'re a real person: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

banner ad
banner ad