Clint Black's latest is like two EPs awkwardly merged. There are six two-steppin', whiskey swillin', hard drinkin' songs, and then there are six others.
The "others" are a sober bunch, treated like they're much weightier songs than they actually are. "Too Much Rock" and "Code of the West" are message songs with no clear message. "Back Home in Heaven" is like corn syrup: sweet, light and lacking in flavor. The rest are even less memorable. The drinking half contains far better fare. The title track sets the tone with a name checking ode to classic drinking songs. Whether the problem is how to leave your girl ("I Don't Wanna Tell You") or that she's already gone ("Heartaches," "Thinkin' of You"), alcohol is the answer. These are carefully crafted songs with playful words that don't quite mask the heartbreak. Backed with uptempo tracks, they put on a good show of classic honky tonk style.
Unfortunately, the two halves are mixed together. But it's worth skipping past the sober songs to get to the drinkin'.