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Album Reviews - Page 5

Urban Ripcord Cover Photo
Capitol Nashville
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ToC Critic’s Pick: Keith Urban, ‘Ripcord’

Keith Urban’s new Ripcord album is pure country cardio. The thumping, rhythmic collection of songs will make you sweat. Even the ballads come full of energy and urgency

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Cole Swindell Album
Ethan Miller, Getty Images
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Album Spotlight: Cole Swindell, ‘You Should Be Here’

Cole Swindell gets his heart broken — or at least wounded — on many songs from You Should Be Here, his second studio album.

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Martina McBride Reckless Review
Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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ToC Critic’s Pick: Martina McBride, ‘Reckless’

Few albums released in 2016 will have the lyrical integrity of Reckless, Martina McBride's first album on Nash Icon Records. Each of the 10 songs hits like red wine on an empty stomach, with the buzz growing stronger the more you sip.

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kane-brown-chapter-1-cover-1-11
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Album Spotlight: Kane Brown, ‘Chapter 1’ EP

“Used to Love You Sober” is a fine representative for Kane Brown’s new Chapter 1 EP. With one exception, the newcomer relies on a throaty delivery of spoken word-to-crooning lyrics to tell stories of love or love lost. He’s as advertised.

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Southern Family Album Artists
Alberto E. Rodriguez / Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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Album Spotlight: Various Artists, ‘Southern Family’

Producer Dave Cobb's commitment to crafting an album full of stories about life in the rural South is absolute. With Southern Family, 12 artists turned in songs about Southern culture, traditions and grandparents ... lots and lots of grandparents.

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Steve Moakler
Spencer Combs
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ToC Critic’s Pick: Steve Moakler, ‘Steve Moakler’ EP

Steve Moakler makes being an independent artist look good. His self-titled EP features five dynamic and diverse songs that rely on strong songwriting and effortless storytelling. It's a reminder that you don't need major label support to make great music.

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Randy Houser FiredUp
Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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Album Spotlight: Randy Houser, ‘Fired Up’

Comparisons between Luke Bryan and Randy Houser will become more convincing after one listens to the 17 songs on Fired Up, Houser's fifth studio album.

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Berman Fenulus for Taste of Country
Berman Fenulus for Taste of Country
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Album Spotlight: Granger Smith, ‘Remington’

Granger Smith is comfortable in his own boots through each of the 15 songs on Remington, his debut album on Wheelhouse Records.

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Vince Gill
Michael Loccisano, Getty Images
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Album Spotlight: Vince Gill, ‘Down to My Last Bad Habit’

With Down to My Last Bad Habit, Vince Gill introduces himself to a younger generation of country music fans without sacrificing the lyricism, integrity and compelling blend of styles he's been known for for decades.

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Charles Kelley
Josh Lowe for Taste of Country
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Album Spotlight: Charles Kelley, ‘The Driver’

Charles Kelley's The Driver album is a project that rewards commitment. There’s nothing as immediately infectious as many of his full-time band’s greatest hits. Instead, he’s hoping fans will dig deep into his lyrics.

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