Single Review: Kenny Chesney, “Somewhere With You”

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November 20, 2010

Following in the footsteps of Taylor Swift’s “Mine” and Tim McGraw’s “Felt Good On My Lips,” Kenny Chesney’s latest single sheds its country coat for, in his case, a mellow, strictly-rock groove. Though it’s a little edgier than usual, “Somewhere With You” finds Chesney doing what he’s built half his career doing: brooding. And it all looks and sounds a little “haven’t I heard this before?”…until the chorus hits.

It’s the kind of chorus that feels more like an experience than a string of lyrics. Chesney takes you through an intoxicating whirlwind of memories, outlining the specific moments –on a carnival ride, in a cheap hotel room, on a rain-soaked beach– that built his bond with the girl he can’t seem to shake. There’s a palpable intensity to his monologue, with its potent rhythm and mix of literal and emotionally-charged details.

The kicker is that, though Chesney’s character is clearly tortured by his lingering feelings, you’re left with the inkling that the two didn’t share a pure, selfless love – but, rather, a love that filled holes and fed an addiction. The searing couplet “I hate my life/hold onto me” hints at a darker aspect of their love, and Chesney’s signature monotone delivery serves as a chilling backdrop to this sentiment. It’s an intriguing take on Chesney’s tried-and-true theme of nostalgia.

Written by J.T. Harding & Shane McAnally

Grade: B

Listen: Somewhere With You

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20 Comments

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  1. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    This one didn’t really work with me. I thought the production got distracting in places, and I didn’t really think the monotonous vocal worked either. You made a convincing case for it though.

  2. MikeNo Gravatar says:

    About the only song worth a listen as a country tune off his new album…and it’s not this one. It’s his duet with George Jones. Nothing more than a pop-rock track that should be getting play on FM dials that aren’t country; but we all know it will anyways because, ohhhhhhh it’s a Kenny Chesney song!

  3. TomNo Gravatar says:

    …in the old days, it was so easy to comment on a chesney song, but these days he makes it quite hard to sort of hate him. actually, this is a very likeable tune.

  4. Tara SeetharamNo Gravatar says:

    Ben, I’m with you you on the production – the bridge drives me nuts.

  5. JakeNo Gravatar says:

    I think the song is one of his better ones he’s released in the past 2-3 years. Sure it’s not traditional country but most of his music isn’t. And it’s different enough from some of his other songs that it’s kinda a breath a fresh air to hear on radio.

  6. Molly PNo Gravatar says:

    This song has slowly grown on me. It’s actually quite haunting and you have to give it credit for being catchy as hell.

  7. Erik NorthNo Gravatar says:

    Given his track record of beach-party anthems and all, “brooding” is the last word I could think of to describe Chesney. The only song of his I can think of that fits that term would be the haunting “I’d Have Done A Lot Of Things Different” (written with the legendary Bill Anderson).

  8. Tara SeetharamNo Gravatar says:

    I associate the term with nostalgia – dwelling in the past and what not. I think plenty of songs in his catalogue fall into this bucket (like his last single). But maybe I have a different interpretation of the word.

  9. Leeann WardNo Gravatar says:

    I’d say brooding too, though it’s seems more posturing as brooding to me, such as “Better As A Memory.”

  10. TomNo Gravatar says:

    …you guys hang out far too much at the 9513 – this jon character seems to rub off on you.

  11. Tara SeetharamNo Gravatar says:

    Ouch.

  12. Leeann WardNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t even get the connection.

  13. J.R. JourneyNo Gravatar says:

    I like this track too. The production signals an urgency that compliment the lyrics very well. For reasons I’ve yet to pinpoint, this track reminds me a lot of Brooks & Dunn’s ‘South of Santa Fe’.

  14. H HernandezNo Gravatar says:

    Anyone who thinks this song doesn’t work, has to have some serious issues. I’m not a huge country fan. I can appreaciate it, but not enough to say I’m a fan of the genre as a whole. With that said, this song is flat out amazing. It works in every way possible. That guitar engages you from start til end.

  15. LizNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with H Hernandez – this song is absolutely incredible!

    I’m also absolutely in love with Kenny and everything about him! I think he is an amazing artist and I support everything he supports – CORONA, NSR, Takamine and of course all I now wear is Blue Chair Bay!

    http://www.kennychesney.com
    http://www.bluechairbaystore.com
    http://www.corona.com
    http://www.noshoesradio.com
    http://www.takamine.com

  16. JennyNo Gravatar says:

    OMG! I LOVE BLUE CHAIR BAY!!! LIZ I THINK YOU’RE MY NEW BEST FRIEND!

    alongside the topic – THIS SONG IS AMAZING! anyone who thinks otherwise – well…you’re wrong :P

  17. SamNo Gravatar says:

    Kenny Chesney fans! Don’t we all love free music and exclusive content? Well, you can get Brad Paisley’s new song “This is Country Music” for FREE when you enter your email address at http://www.ThisIsCountryMusic.com
    AND pre-order Brad’s upcoming album for a discounted price and get access to content you will not get anywhere else!

  18. plain_joNo Gravatar says:

    This is the first Chesney song I am able to listen to in a very long time.

  19. JessNo Gravatar says:

    Kenny Chesney in concert 2011! Check out the tickets now available! http://tinyurl.com/4qlx5um

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