Jason Aldean is parked in a Rearview Town
April 24th 2018
Rearview Town is Jason Aldean’s eighth studio album and fourth to debut atop the mainstream Billboard album charts, as well as the Country album charts. He recently won entertainer of the year at the coveted Academy of Country Music Awards. Suffice to say his start to 2018 is a great one.
On Rearview Town Jason Aldean is doing what he does best; delivering up a full (if not
oversized) serving of generic country rock. This is evident as a tough guitar intro drops Dirt To Dust into the well known Aldean formula. Set it Off, Blacktop Gone and Girl Like You are all good, upbeat, and strong driving rockers. With the exception of the lazy Sunday morning drawl of Make It Easy (co-written by Florida Georgia Line) all the songs are what you expect, and for the ardent Aldean fan that is just fine. However somewhere halfway through this album one might start to feel stuffed with 15 songs none of which are past the three minute and a half mark. It’s a bit too much, too little, all at once.
Rearview Town is all the same generic songs musically and lyrically about women, bars, and small towns. One highlight is the aptly titled Better At Being Who I Am which let’s us know what we’re in for throughout the album with “broke out these old boots again / Gonna jump in that ‘ol truck head down to the bar / and hang out with an old friend”.
Ride All Night is almost too much of the same old formula where he says he likes her “feet on the dash”. The very good title track Rearview Town reiterates this with “Wiped her footprints off the dash”. Didn’t he already mention this specific fetish “have your pretty pink toes on the dash” on Take a Little Ride from 2012’s Night Train album.
There’s the heart breaking country sorrow of how a memory Drowns the Whiskey. This song has guest vocals from Miranda Lambert, however she is pretty much just doing background vocals on the chorus. It would have been a better song than it already is if she had been given a verse to sing and fully accompany him on the chorus.
One of the best songs is Getting Warmed Up. A fun energy rocker that’s sure to be a concert staple if not opener on his upcoming tour. It would also be better if it didn’t have a mid song rap. It doesn’t work and Jason flat out shouldn’t try to rap, which he tries on two more songs, Set it Off and Like You Are Mine that also has auto tune vocals. If that’s Jason branching out musically he should just stick to what he does best, because that’s what makes this a good album overall.
If you thought Aldean was going to cash in on the tragic Route 91 shooting with a long gospel style ballad well he doesn’t, which most other artists would have done. He does however dedicate this album to them in the liner notes. For that alone Jason is better and being who he is and can say as one song does Like Me or Don’t.