Single Review: Jerrod Niemann, “Drink to That All Night”

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February 5, 2014

jerrod niemann drink to that all nightAny time a country single not only reminds you of Rebecca Black’s “Friday”, but also falls short of it in charm and vocal delivery, something has gone horribly wrong.

I really am starting to run out of adjectives and assorted observations.   This has a tired theme coupled with the dreaded vocoder effect.   You’ve heard it all before, just like you’ve read my thoughts on it all before.

I will say that if the verses were sung instead of country rapped, a bit more like he does on the chorus, the whole thing might’ve been more listenable.  As is, this record is kind of painful to listen to, like the dull headache you get from a long and irritating day in musical form.

It’s not good, y’all.  It’s just not good.

Written by Derek George, Lance Miller, Brad Warren, and Brett Warren

Grade: D

 

 

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23 Comments

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23 Comments so far

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  1. Markus MeyerNo Gravatar says:

    Is this really the same guy that made ‘Free The Music’?

    He’s so much better, and too talented a vocalist for that dreaded autotune.

    High ‘F’ to low ‘D-’ for me.

  2. bobNo Gravatar says:

    Never heard of Rebecca Black and hope to never hear this song again.

  3. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    Best. Opening paragraph. Ever.

  4. CountryKnightNo Gravatar says:

    So the big question remains: Is this song better that Black’s newest “song” “Saturday”?

  5. the pistoleroNo Gravatar says:

    I heard this song precisely once. That was 3 minutes and 41 seconds that would have been better spent listening to something better. Like fart noises.

  6. TomNo Gravatar says:

    …this is a smash hit, folks. fair enough, whether the world really needed one more song about bro drinking habits is questionable, but niemann’s take is rather groovy, danceable and shoutable, even if you’re close to throw up the 10th beer, which must have been a bad one for some reason.

    how did the wonderful gloria estefan put it already years ago: “the rhythm’s gonna get you…”

  7. Erik NorthNo Gravatar says:

    I can only shake my head at the notion that the country music audience would accept this ****. Every single “bro country” hit keeps getting worst and worse.

  8. PSU MikeNo Gravatar says:

    Kevin, I give you credit for not taking the easy way out. You could have just made the last two sentences your entire review, and I think everyone would’ve understood and agreed.

    You touched on it, but it’s gotta be hard for you guys to review something this bad. Heck, outside of the autotune, it’s not even interestingly bad. The song is just flat out unpleasant to listen to, and after hearing it once…I don’t want to hear it again.

  9. Tom PNo Gravatar says:

    Well, just when I think it could not get any worse I am proven wrong. I am not sure what is more sad. This horrible song or that there are people out there who thinks this is cool.

  10. RachelNo Gravatar says:

    I really looooove this song. He just released a music video for it too! http://smarturl.it/DTTANvideo.

  11. Noah EatonNo Gravatar says:

    Even worse then! ;)

  12. CorkyNo Gravatar says:

    Its funny that you guys hate it so much, yet its had a slow burn up the charts, and is selling like crazy. You guys seem to be pretty close-minded. Never let the constraints of a genre close you off to a good song, or at least a fun song. If you want the same hat act recycled over and over, be my guest. I’d rather have a dynamic country genre than one that limits creativity.

  13. Noah EatonNo Gravatar says:

    On the contrary, Corky, “Drink To That All Night” is not an example of creativity, but a calculating attempt on the part of Niemann, the song’s writers and Arista Nashville to capitalize on the frat-country and EDM trends to put his recording career on stable ground again after a sophomore slump.

    Niemann isn’t a leader here. He’s a follower.

    *

    As for your point on the constraints of genre, then by all means, let’s just annihilate contrast in all forms and homogenize every conceivable entity or idea known to civilization! ;)

    Let’s let Chris Brown consider his next song “country” if he even utters the word “country” once in the lyrics, or whiskey! Let’s let the Insane Clown Posse label their music “country” if they incorporate two token banjo notes into one of their songs or exaggerate a twang in their vocals for a brief moment. Let’s call any country artist who refers to their merchandise on their official websites as “swag” be equally considered rappers deserving of massive rap airplay as well! ;)

    I certainly do NOT desire to “want the same hat act recycled over and over,” but what you seem to want certainly resembles the opposite end of the continuum. That is, we should just lump everything together and mix-and-match what we want and don’t want.

    I have to say it’s fascinating that whenever many claim that “country music needs to evolve”, it more often than not is uttered from the mouths of those who also admit that they hated country music until they discovered one of the pop or former rock acts transitioning into country. I witnessed this firsthand with many who followed Nickelback throughout the 00′s then, as their commercial decline began and the rock genre was without a relevant superstar band in their place, frantically turned elsewhere to find their fix and, in noticing Jason Aldean was rocking harder than many supposed “rock” acts are today, flocked to him and said this was the first time they ever liked country music overall. And, to that effect, that suggests the narrow-mindedness on the part of these listeners.

    Of course there will always be a place for evolution in any particular musical tradition. But it is disastrous and irresponsible to conflate evolution with reinvention. Otherwise, a format or musical tradition will hemorrhage so much of its identity and diversity…………and you’re left with a genre that is anything BUT dynamic and creative in that it is merely a shadow of its former self.

  14. CorkyNo Gravatar says:

    Noah,

    What separates Jerrod from your ridiculous ICP, or Chris Brown example, is that Jerrod is a virtual walking country music encyclopedia. He bleeds country, but is also and artist in the truest sense of the word. Download his version of “Leavin’ Cheyenne” from his website, and you’ll see what I mean. Just a bunch of guys drinkin’ moonshine and singing around a mic.

    Also, to think that an artist can calculate a top 10 song to boost ratings just shows that you really don’t know what you’re talking about. If it were that easy to “calculate” a hit, there would be a lot more music folks sitting pretty.

    You have every right to say what you think, and every right to confine yourself to listening to the same old country. Like it or not, the country genre is changing, as does everything.

  15. Noah EatonNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t doubt for one second that Jerrod Niemann was raised on country music and has a genuine acknowledgement of it. That doesn’t expunge the reality that Niemann is following trends and milking them for all they’re worth to the detriment of diversity and the genre’s identity.

    For the record, I much enjoyed his first two albums in spite of a couple of lackluster singles. “Bakersfield”, “They Should Have Named You Cocaine” and “Fraction of a Man” were all solid in particular, and his eclecticism mostly served him well on those efforts. Something tells me I’m not going to like “High Noon” nearly as much, but I’ll give it a fair thorough two listens first and hope I’m pleasantly surprised.

    I don’t believe you heard me loud and clear earlier when I said I’m all for evolution! ;) What I’m adamantly opposed to is the dispensing of contrast and the embracing of homogeneity in all forms. “Drink to That All Night” resembles the monogenre at work. Country stereotypes? Check! Rock guitars? Check! EDM four-on-the-floor beat? Check! Rap-like cadences and flow in the verses? Check! Dubstep breakdown?

    …………oooooooooops, you forgot that, Jerrod! ;)

    But you see the point? There’s a complete contempt for contrast at play here. Where the idea of “evolution” is taking much of the same components of all viable radio genres and lumping them together: hip-hop/EDM beats, loud rock guitars, country-living tropes, rap-like vocals in the verses and singing in the chorus, electronic flourishes, and a token banjo as a watermark of sorts to market it as “country”. That’s not evolution: that’s stagnation.

  16. Six String RichieNo Gravatar says:

    Additionally, mixing pop and country together really can’t be seen as “revolutionary” anymore since almost every country artist does it these days.

    Mixing country with say Latin or jazz could be considered revolutionary if it was done since nobody on today’s radio is doing that.

    “Drink to that All Night” also follows every cliche in songwriting we have today, so it’s lyrics definitely can’t be considered “evolution.”

    The song really is just chasing trends.

  17. CorkyNo Gravatar says:

    First of all, Noah, before you try the big words, you should see what they mean, first.

    No where did I say that any of it is “revolutionary.” I did say not to let the constraints of a genre keep you from enjoying a song. You may not like the song…that’s totally your call. However, to say that its a “bad” song is probably wrong in this case. If it were a bad song, then it wouldn’t be #9 and moving up.

    Six String Richie, a song does not need to be “revolutionary” to be “evolutionary.” Music is dynamic. Every genre changes. Look at what happened to country music in the 90′s…and people hated it then. What’s considered straight ahead country now was very controversial then. Garth Brooks, The Dixie Chicks, Shania Twain, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill…all of those artists changed the face of country. We’re in a new era of country music. There is a place for the old hat acts, but if it didn’t evolve, the genre would fade away.

    Getting back to “Drink To That,” could it possibly be that Jerrod heard it and just liked the song? I think that’s a very real possibility. Maybe he thought it was a fun song, and he wanted to cut it.

    I admire your passion on the subject, but to just bash a song and an artist because you don’t like his new direction is pretty childish.

  18. the pistoleroNo Gravatar says:

    but to just bash a song and an artist because you don’t like his new direction is pretty childish

    No, calling people “childish” because they don’t like that new direction is what’s childish.

    And lots of bad songs have done well on the charts.

  19. Noah EatonNo Gravatar says:

    Corky: I’m assuming you merely skimmed the meat of my responses, because you would find I hold Jerrod Niemann’s first two albums in a mostly positive regard. Therefore I’m hardly “bashing” this artist as you childishly accuse me of! ;)

    Yes, it is true I’m bashing “Drink To That All Night”. Because aside from the fact it’s offers nothing new to the table save adopting half-assed middle-of-the-road production from EDM, it’s (at least in my opinion, but I’m far from alone in this) a bad song on its own right, regardless of genre.

    And again the correlation of chart peak with quality argument is hilarious. By that logic, we should regard “We Will Never Ever Get Back Together” as one of the best country singles of all time for the simple fact that it is among the longest-running #1 hits on the Hot Country Songs chart, right? (disregarding the fact that it only attained #1 after a late change to the chart methodology combining crossover airplay with country radio airplay, digital sales and streaming) ;)

    Well, by all means when brokenCYDE or the Insane Clown Posse decide to record a country/”country” song, I suppose when that matters when it comes to critical relevance is how high it peaks and whether that they actually liked it, right? ;)

  20. Markus MeyerNo Gravatar says:

    People actually use chart position to determine quality? Dear lord…

  21. RyanNo Gravatar says:

    How did you all get so smart? If you don’t like it, turn it off. THERE’S a revolutionary idea. You morons better get used to hearing it, because the pop version is going to keep it on your radio a lot longer.

    Write us an old-school cheating song if you want, and let’s see how it does. Oh yeah, you’re a bunch of no-talent whiners who can’t do any better.

    Change the direction country music with your own writing, or shut your trap.

  22. Leeann WardNo Gravatar says:

    Ryan,
    Please review our Comment Policy, particularly #2. We welcome your opinion and even disagreement, but we insist that it is expressed respectfully.
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  23. Noah EatonNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t expect “Drink To That All Night” to get remixed for Mainstream Top 40 radio, in all honesty………and for one clear reason.

    Music Row is far more reactive than it is active in terms of cultural trendlines. When a trend is skipped like a stone across the cultural pond, its ripples take at least two years to impact “country” airwaves. We’ve seen this happen firsthand with the genre pouncing on arena rock’s bankabiliy, followed by drum machines, followed by rap influences and, now, EDM and Drake-esque Rhythmic sounds.

    “Drink To That All Night” is hardly as innovative as some “country” listeners may make it out to be because the first wave of EDM across mainstream American airwaves had already peaked. Yet, while Mainstream Top 40 has moved onto “Alternative”/indie pop crossover acts and a different breed of Baltic electronic acts primarily, “country” airwaves are reacting as though the Black Eyed Peas, T-Pain and Akon are the superstar acts of the moment (they are not).

    It’s for this reason that “Drink To That All Night” isn’t going to be a breakout mainstream Top 40 hit. It’s not even a colossal digital seller. It’s far more likely “This Is How We Roll” and “19 You + Me” will get crossover treatment.

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