Wednesday, August 31, 2016

CD Review: Brad Paisley - Moonshine In The Trunk

CD Review: Brad Paisley - Moonshine In The Trunk


I have the ho-hum Monday blues today, and what a better way to lift my spirits than some, Moonshine In The Trunk, by Brad Paisley! Enlisting a series of famous celebrity friends such as Jeff Gordon, Ellen Degeneres, Colt Ford, Carrie Underwood, and even NASA; Brad Paisley, “leaked” the album and collaborated songs one by one to make you feel good, and to make you laugh. The “leaked” songs seem to have proved very creative on Brad's part with this 15 song album. It's a song by song “cash-cow” stored away in the trunk for a rainy day. Better than a swig of moonshine after one hell of a bad day, this album will lift your spirits and keep you soaring to the moon long after Me and Jesus, the 15th track, concludes.

Back in 2014, Brad Paisley, released his debut album, Moonshine In The Trunk, with theleaked” help of his NASCAR friend, Jeff Gordon. Growing up in the south we had “muscle cars” that ran moonshine from the backwoods stills to communities and “dry counties” everywhere. That is until prohibition regulated our “spirits” by tax and for transport. Back in the day when a bored out 354 was the norm, '69 Camaro's Ford Fairlane's, and 5.0 Mustangs: when Dukes of Hazard was on the t.v. screen and “Daisy Dukes” were first incepted and accepted across all of America. It was the mischievous, “rebel way”; the “southern way of life” that inspired Moonshine In The Trunk, the fifth tract on this album. And who better to represent and leak the song and album cover than muscle car, NASCAR race driver, Jeff Gordon?

Crushin' It, the album's first title track, is a wacky, fun filled song, and a SUPERHERO CARTOOON featuring his country music artist counterparts, and was entirely drawn and written by, Brad Paisley, himself. Superheroes crush beer cans and weekend routines....routines and chores that never seem to get done. But, seems as if there's always time to pop a top on a cold can of Bud Light to wash away all your worries when listening to your favorite country music artists and trying to relax. A typical, beer drinking, lazy weekend kind of song that gets you in the mood to do nothing but emptying that beer can and Crushin' It to mark the passing of your weekend days.

River Bank, the second tract, was collaborated with, Colt Ford, best known for his country music rap. Brad just felt Colt should be in on the recording; the lyrics fit, so Brad sent them to Colt Ford and the upbeat River Bank is the result. With another pull on the “cash cow”, “it's the soundtrack to a perfect Labor Day BBQ”, Brad says.

Perfect Storm, the third track, is a love ballad about the perfect woman; the right girl, the One. She's everything all wrapped into one: she's the calm in the eye of the storm, but can rip you a new one if she feels threatened. She's the Perfect Storm: a volatile force to be reckoned with, but also the perfect woman; even with her temper tantrums that blow with the wind, she's perfect within the storm. She's “sunshine mixed with a little hurricane.....she don't just rain, she pours. That girl right there is the Perfect Storm”. This is, by far, my favorite song on this album!

High Life, featuring Carrie Underwood is a cute, funny and upbeat song about an everyday “bunch of low-lifes, livin' the high life” with “money burnin' a hole in the pockets of her holey jeans” when the family gets several windfall cash settlements, only after living their entire lives from paycheck to paycheck. It's the fourth track on this album, and another “cash cow” compilation of Brad's wit and humor stashed in the trunk for another rainy day.

Shattered Glass, the sixth tract, is a love song written for Brad's wife. This “cash cow” was “leaked” to Ellen Degeneres, who absolutely loves the song! The lyrics enable women to believe in themselves even when their hearts are shattered and broken. It instills the belief that every woman has the power within herself to make anything happen. In an interview Brad said, 'There’s two people I really wrote that for; one of them exists and one of them is imaginary. The real one is my wife [actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley]. I have so much respect for her and what she does.... This song is supposed to be a pep talk to any woman who has dreams she wants to achieve, and thinks to herself, 'This might not be something a woman like me can do.' Not true. Go do it, the sky's the limit! It’s meant to be a total vote of confidence and love song in that sense. It’s basically [saying] 'I believe in you!' And the fictional character I wrote it for is our daughter who does not exist...What song would I write for my daughter? It would be this exact song"-Brad. Shattered Glass is another of my favorites from Moonshine In The Trunk.

American Flag On The Moon, is another “cash cow” which set this album over the moon with the help of NASA, who “leaked” this thirteenth tract out of fifteen. Brad said one night his son looked up at the stars and the moon and said, “I think I can see the flag!”. “That's the perfect metaphor of metaphors right there”, said Brad in an interview. With all of NASA's eyes looking to the stars and at Mars, they adopted the song as “their own” and no wonder; not only does it embrace the sense of wonder, but also pride and accomplishment of American adventure in space travel.. Out of the mouth's of babe's come logic, and a song with a star date all of it's own! Will there be an American flag on Mars some day......who knows but, American Flag On The Moon, definitely shines bright on country music star, Brad Paisley these days!

Always the comic, Brad Paisley was quoted, “Humor is the key to anything”, and it shows in his funny, everyday happening, parody-like songs, chocked full of libations and good times! The “leaks” and artist collaborations definitely put this album above and beyond the “cash cow” limelight, and over the moon status. It's not always easy to “leak” songs before they're publicly released because you cut out the middle man: the musicians, the songwriter's, the producers; they don't get paid, so we have to be very careful how and when they're leaked so we don't ruin any plans already made.”-Brad Paisley. Moonshine In The Trunk, the album, earns five out of five stars for its longevity on Billboard charts since 2014 alone!
Now, will somebody please pass me the moonshine and another round of Brad Paisley? Over and out....Penney.

Cc: Penney Holley for Country Music News International, August 29, 2016
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