Kenny Chesney

Me and You – 1996 (BNA)

Reviewed by Dallas Clemmons

Kenny Chesney is one of the most highly touted of today's young country acts. Not yet 30, Billboard says his career is "on its way to a big explosion." And certainly his new album, his third, is pleasant enough. Chesney co-wrote four of the songs for his last album, but none for this. One can't help but think these songs were chosen for ultimate packaging purposes. It's a standard mix of boot-scootin' numbers and ballads, none particularly memorable, but none particularly displeasing either. Chesney has a strong voice, and his band sounds tight. Only "Another Friday Night" sounds much like traditional country music (and not much at that). One can hear the occasional fiddle, but nothing else in the instrumentation reminds the listener of country music past. Chesney's influences include Phil Collins, and like much of today's Nashville product his music would seem to fit in better alongside '70's pop ballads and Southern rock than Haggard or even Travis and Strait. But for what it is, this is a solid album.