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Tracy Byrd

Ten Rounds – 2001 (RCA)

Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz

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CDs by Tracy Byrd

Tracy Byrd seems to be a bit of a conundrum. His roots are in a more traditional, Texas honky tonk style, but that rarely ever comes across in recordings.

"How Much Does the World Weigh" is perhaps the most country song here, and it's one of the best as well. "Summertime Fever" is a good uptempo Texas honky tonker with edge. On the other hand, he goes for more of a rocking sound on "A Good Way to Get On My Bad Side," a duet with Mark Chesnutt, with easy pokes at boy bands and singers with cowboy hats. If he added country songs with guitars too loud, he could have been called a hypocrite.Too many songs don't measure up. Byrd's version of Michael Martin Murphey's "Wildfire" is not compelling. It sounds like too much of an attempt to include a potential single. And "Just Let Me Be in Love" is lyrically lame (Byrd wrote none of the songs here) with lines like "What we got going on is so incredible/This chemistry between us feels so wonderful."

Lastly, why bother include a so-called "bonus track," reprising his big hit of 1995 "Keeper of the Stars." Ok, so it's a new version, but it's not so radically different and more importantly not needed. Byrd did not score a knockout here by any stretch.