Nothing like a good country music driving song, right? I could make a whole road trip playlist full of them. Ostensibly, Sara Evans’ upcoming single “Anywhere” is seeking a spot on my road trip playlist. It’s a bit off-putting, unfortunately, that the lyric plays more like a watered-down knockoff of Jo Dee Messina’s “Heads Carolina, Tails California.”
At the very least, the single earns points for a committed vocal performance on Evans’ part, as well as a cool banjo-rocker of a production, which could have made for a pleasant little slice of pop-country. But the song structure is totally not there.
Here’s the main problem: “We can go aaaaaannnyyyyyyyyywheeeeeeeeeeeeere!!!” You call that a hook? That is so not a hook. It says nothing. It doesn’t tap into any sort of emotion, or convey anything beyond what it says on paper. It’s just… there. It’s hardly worth building a four-minute song around, plus stretching a three-syllable word over four seconds just makes it sound grating. From there, Evans rattles off “California, Mississippi, all the way to New York City…” which basically amounts to lyrical wheels-spinning. “I’m tired of living my life in Park; I want to live it in Drive,” is a good line, but outside of that, the lyric comes across as uninspired and forced.
I can’t get behind this. I just can’t.
Evans is a mighty fine singer with some memorable hits under her belt – “Born to Fly,” “Suds In the Bucket,” and “A Real Fine Place to Start” still sound just as endlessly entertaining as ever, and last year’s chart-topper “A Little Bit Stronger” was a solid effort as well. She tries her darndest hard to sell this one, but ultimately, “Anywhere” still feels like an astounding waste of perfectly good vocal talent.
Evans’ radio airtime is already limited enough as it is, and with a pair of gems like “Alone” and “What That Drink Cost Me” vying for single release, there’s no need to waste it on this.
Written by Matt Evans and Jaren Johnston