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Wade Bowen

If We Ever Make It Home – 2008 (Sustain)

Reviewed by Don Armstrong

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CDs by Wade Bowen

Wade Bowen's fourth album is full of tidy little turns of phrase, blaring guitars and driving rhythm, but few fresh ideas. I messed up in this relationship (You Had Me at My Best), beautiful women are trouble (Trouble), I'm outta here (Nobody's Fool), love fixes everything (From Bad to Good), Daddy drank (Daddy and the Devil) - ho hum.

Bowen does sing about his wife's postpartum depression in the allegory-laden Turn on the Lights, but as with nearly everything on this radio-ready collection, a sense of real conviction is lacking. Bowen co-wrote most of the selections and supplies serviceable, if whiny, lead vocals. He also declares, in an odd and overly long outtake at the end of Missing You that producer J.R. Rodriguez's studio antics, including a howl of approval, are "hilarious." They're hearing things the listener does not.