Telling All My Secrets (Riser House/Columbia Nashville, 2018)
Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh
The hit, "Drunk Me," sounds like it could have just as easily been a hit for Bon Jovi. It has that big hair, anthemic quality. He loves writing about alcohol, which is a value he shares with many other country artists. However, this liquor love also led to the badly titled "Alcohol You Later," which is neither funny nor good. The title cut sways to an enjoyable soul groove. It has a musical throwback quality that highlights Tenpenny's nuanced vocal tone. Its arrangement also features warm blues guitar fills. As good as it is, though, it's still not particularly country. "Walk Like Him," which sketches out the similarities between a father and a son, is country-styled lyric that supports the value of family relationships. Once again, though, it's more of a soul musing than a country tune.
Except for its over-reliance on drinking analogies and mostly non-country musical elements, there's much to enjoy about "Telling All My Secrets..." It's good pop music in many places, but we also need to call it what it is.
CDs by Mitchell Tenpenny
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