Rascal Flatts

Nothing Like This – 2010 (Big Machine)

Reviewed by Tim Johnson

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CDs by Rascal Flatts

Rascal Flatts have become one of country's most bankable bands by turning out albums that are consistently strong and provide the listener with a nice mix of fast and slow. Which is why it's so surprising that their latest offering, "Nothing Like This," is so bad. While the sound is signature RF, the song lineup lacks anything to distinguish it - the material is boring and nondescript, each song blending into the next without any sort of demarcation. The low point is probably They Try, a bland easy listening tune that will soon be heard in elevators and dentist offices all over the country, although Easy, a bizarre duet with Brit pop star Natasha Bedingfield is also pretty bad, something that perhaps seemed like a good cross-genre idea on paper, but in practice comes off as just plain weird.

Yes, there are a few good songs. Their first radio cut, Why Wait, is smooth and fun and agreeable. All Night to Get There may be a bit clichéd, but it's a good listen that will take you back to high school days. And the final song, I Won't Let Go, is probably the best offering here, a tender ballad that evokes some of RF's stronger work. But three good songs do not make a great album, and we all know that these guys can do a whole lot better than this.