CD Review: Jennifer Nettles - That Girl
Falling 3:23, Me Without You 3:37, Moneyball 3:13, That Girl 4:00, This Angel 3:31, Jealousy 3:51, This One's For You 3:44, Know You Wanna Know 3:05, Thank You 4:11, Good Time To Cry 4:26, Like A Rock 4:23
The singing of Jennifer Nettles on the cd That Girl is as great as ever. All the songs are spectacular ballads, some a little more up tempo than others. Falling tells a wistful story of a youthful summer fling and it really hooked me. Me Without You has the singer telling the lover who left he'd not recognize her because “your pretty bird just flew”. You'd think the musical arrangement would have you feeling sunshine on a cloudy day, but the arrangement is so slow and ballady it feels like the singer preaching happiness is lying to herself but the lyric does not support it. Moneyball has a funky fun groove but I can't tell if the lyric is supposed to preaching hope or bemoaning fate. That Girl is the standout track with the singer being the other woman very cleverly telling us about all her mixed emotions. The first words of the first verse in This Angel ask “who is this angel” and I'm still trying to figure out if it's a person or a spirit or faith. Jealousy has some cool mandolin with a cute catchy melody. It's a fun song, but just when I get to bopping like Bill Haley, This One's For You slows things down a lot and sorta puts me in a night club sipping a martini with a lyric that sounds nice but doesn't seem to hook. Know You Wanna Know sounds really up beat but the lyric sounds really preachy and did not draw me in. Thank you is very slow and the lyric sounds like it might have been better placed on a thank you card than as a song on this cd. Good Time To Cry is a good country cryer but at this point I was balladed out. I was hoping Like A Rock would sorta rock me out but it balladed me more. Peppy hooky fun tunes like Stuck Like Glue and Who Says You Can't Go Home are nowhere to be found on this cd. To my ears, Jennifer Nettles is one of the best country singers ever, and it will be a dream come true if I ever get to sing a duet with her. 9 of the 11 songs on this cd are individually great but as a collection if feels like a real downer. On her next cd I truly hope Jennifer Nettles will get some radio ready hooky songs recorded because her talent deserves to be in the top 10 right next to Carrie Underwood and Kelsea Ballerini.
Michael Sikorsky for Country Music News International