Showing posts with label ronnie dunn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ronnie dunn. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

video review: 'peace, love, and country music' by ronnie dunn

Well, this has been in my backlog way too long. Glad to finally get a chance to talk about it, especially considering it turned out to be an interesting, if not exactly workable album.

Okay, next up will either be Ought or Frankmusik, because I need a little more time to cover Lykke Li, Epica, and (UGH) Lily Allen. Stay tuned!

album review: 'peace, love, and country music' by ronnie dunn

My very first concert was a Brooks & Dunn concert.

I don't remember much of it - I remember Lonestar opened for them and did a pretty solid job, and that Brooks & Dunn really had a lot of flashy fireworks in their show - but the duo left on an impression on me growing up. When I was listening to 90s country, I listened to a lot of Brooks & Dunn, and looking back on them now, I'm not surprised why they did so well. Kix Brooks had the smoother tones to bring in a more pop audience, and Ronnie Dunn had the rougher, more 'country' vocals to appeal to mainstream country fans. 

That said, as much great line-dancing music as they made, they were never critical darlings, mostly because they weren't exactly deep songwriters before they subsumed to the Nashville songwriting machine. And as much as I like the band for making some 90s country standards, you didn't go to Brooks & Dunn for depth in mainstream country, you had Alan Jackson and George Strait for that. And thus, when Brooks & Dunn split up after two decades of music, I wasn't that fazed. 

What did interest me was Ronnie Dunn's continued solo career, which he kicked off in 2011 with a self-titled album and is most remembered by me with 'Cost Of Livin'', a brutally tragic song about the continued recession across the United States, especially in rural states and small towns. It was a daring move for a second single, and what makes the song so powerful is that it doesn't present a solution or a message that it's all going to be okay. That song, combined with some vitriolic remarks against the evolving state of modern country, did have me curious about his newest album, albeit with a certain degree of caution. After all, I appreciate steps in a more mature or deep direction, but I'm also aware those comments can be used to placate country music press concerned with authenticity from examining your material. So, what does Ronnie Dunn deliver?