Jason Aldean - 9
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9 (Broken Bow, 2019)

Jason Aldean

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

Hollywood may be pushing a broadminded agenda where there are more genders than one can even count, but in Jason Aldean's world, there are only two: tough guys, and the women that love them. There's no confusion it's a guy in the "Camouflage Hat," for example. Also, nothing is said or done without also washing it down with alcohol. The opener,"Tattoos and Tequila," breaks it down into tattoos to remember, and tequila to forget.

Within its booze for every occasion approach, there are nevertheless a couple of fine drinking songs. "Came Here To Drink" sounds melancholy yet celebrates drinking just for drinking's sake. "Don't Drink Anymore" describes a woman not at all enthusiastic about her man's drinking habits. "I don't drink anymore," he states in his defense, only to follow this up with "and I don't drink any less." This one is nicely colored with steel guitar.

Aldean is a fine country vocalist whenever he sings over more traditional instrumentation. Unfortunately, the album also includes songs like "We Back," which namedrops AC/DC, and owes more to hard rock music than anything country. The album also sports a prerequisite small-town song ("Keeping It Small Town") and Southern roots declaration ("Dirt We Were Raised On").

Aldean may have flirted with R&B elements a few years ago, but these current sounds stick closely to guitar rock, with just a few country-leaning songs thrown in. Lyrically, these tracks don't tell us anything we didn't already know about Aldean. It won't gain any new fans, then, nor lose any longtime admirers.

CDs by Jason Aldean

9, 2019 Rearview Town, 2018 Old Boots, New Dirt, 2014 Night Train, 2012 My Kinda Party, 2010 Wide Open, 2009 Relentless, 2007 Jason Aldean, 2005

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