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Sounds So Good (cut by cut)

Mike Sudhalter  |  March 15, 2008

I've been listening almost non-stop to "Sounds So Good", the new debut album by Ashton Shepherd. She wrote all 11 of the songs, not bad for a newcomer.

The first thing you hear on the album is Shepherd booming out the opening lyrics to "Takin' Off This Pain." Love it or hate it, the song gets your attention. It's uptempo, and it's easy to forget the meaning of the song, but it comes down to the burden that's lifted when one exits a bad relationship.

The title track is really radio friendly, yet very traditional at the same time. It's just a great feel good song. Singing about the comforts of small-town living and just enjoying life. What could be better than that?

I know. Some ballads by Shepherd. Starting with "Lost In You" It's a pretty good ballad about being totally, completely in love. Not the best ballad on the album, by a long shot, but it's the first one you'll hear if you listen 1 through 11.

"I Ain't Dead Yet" is a true to life song where Shepherd truly shines. Growing up doesn't mean life has to get boring and mundane. You've got to find outlets. And who can think of better outlets than relaxing, beer drinkin' and listenin' to Keith Whitley/Hank Williams on the radio. One problem, Ash, you probably need XM Radio to hear Keith or Hank these days. The local stations aren't playin' the good ole stuff.

"Not Right Now" is like a prequel to "I Ain't Dead Yet." In this song, the girl presumably hasn't got married yet or had any children, but she still has societal norms that pressure her not to go out and have fun. But she likes partying country style. She knows she'll have to settle down, but wants to enjoy life while she can. Who can't relate to this type of story?

The next songs, 6 through 11, coming Sunday.

:: Posted at 9:05 PM by Mike Sudhalter ::
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