June 29, 2012
Everything about “Fastest Girl in Town” is a disaster. It’s one of those rare songs that manages to try too hard and be too lazy at the same time.
The production and the “look at me, I’m so tough and wild” vocal? They try too hard. Thrashing guitar solos that never go anywhere, grit and growl that don’t match the off-the-Wal-Mart-rack lyrics. She’s trying to top the energy of “Gunpowder & Lead” and “Kerosene”, but the underlying tension that made those records work is nowhere to be found here.
That’s because of the lazy songwriting, which is no longer the exception when it comes to Miranda Lambert. It’s the rule. This fastest girl in town is a mere caricature of the rough-edged down-home image that Lambert’s managed to box herself in with. Even Gretchen Wilson wouldn’t have tried to get one over on us with lines like “You’ve got the bullets, I’ve got the gun. I’ve got a hankering for getting into something”, and she built an entire song around a Skoal ring.
Lambert showed such promise in her early work, which peaked creatively with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, an album that still sounds fresh and vital today. I stand by my assertion that “The House that Built Me” was a beautiful distraction from the fact that her music went seriously downhill on Revolution. And this, like most of her latest album, is just a mess.
I am tired of the mediocrity, country music, but I’m even more tired with mediocrity being celebrated and elevated with unwarranted praise. Can we please stop telling our artists that their not nearly good enough is better than the best? Maybe they might, you know, work a little bit harder for that slot on radio and that CMA trophy if they actually had to earn it.
Written by Miranda Lambert and Angaleena Presley
Listen: Fastest Girl in Town