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Trace Adkins

Big Time – 1997 (Capitol Nashville)

Reviewed by Chuck Hamilton

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CDs by Trace Adkins

Trace Adkins may have the perfect resume for a country singer. He's played some of the smokiest honky tonks in Texas, he's gotten banged up in a few motor vehicle pileups, and he's taken a bullet from an angry spouse. (Forget the albums, let's see the autobiography.) But most important of all he owns a soulful baritone voice that's custom-made for country music.

You'd like to be able to say the material matches the talent, but you can't, and it doesn't. On too many occasions, producer Scott Hendricks takes the paint-by-numbers route. On those less formulaic tracks however, Adkins really soars. On "The Rest of Mine," a stone country tune he co-wrote and sang at his wedding, he delivers the goods about as well as anyone out there. The cutesy "See Jane Run," on the other hand, proves little, except that the bubble-gumming of country music is alive and well. All in all, this guy's got a killer album in him. Unfortunately, this'n ain't it.