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Single Review: Eric Church, “Drink in My Hand”

August 28, 2011 Dan Milliken 6

This rocks – and, in its own way, countries – harder than anything else out there. Church navigates it with the ease of a NASCAR driver on a suburban highway, weaving and bobbing so charismatically that Luke, Blake and Dierks start to seem like uptight party-poopers by comparison. You believe him on multiple levels when he hollers that he’s “about to tear a new one in this old town.”

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Retro Single Review: George Strait, “You Look So Good in Love”

August 19, 2011 Dan Milliken 7

1983 | Peak: #1

The 80’s keyboard is like a cheese grater grating extra cheese onto the pizza that is “You Look So Good in Love.” To the modern ear, it imbues the song with an unintentional levity even before George gets to his third-verse recitation. Throw in the über-earnest chorus – not to mention the video – and the thing becomes just about impossible to take seriously.

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Single Review: Keith Urban, “Long Hot Summer”

August 17, 2011 Dan Milliken 23

The closest he’s come in two albums to capturing his old uptempo spark. Maybe that’s because he’s found his banjo again, and it pokes some much-needed holes in the thick layer of polish. Or maybe it’s because he dares to be a little lusty – “waiting on the sun to go down,” his passion rising like (nice touch) a lake in heat.

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Single Review: Miranda Lambert, “Baggage Claim”

August 2, 2011 Dan Milliken 29

A swing and a miss.

Give Lambert her usual credit for adventurousness: the production on this kiss-off is rustic and snappy, like some lost 70’s folk-rock nugget. And “Baggage Claim” is an artist’s work, not an assembly-line knock-off; we certainly haven’t heard this central metaphor before.

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The 30 Day Song Challenge: Day 29

June 7, 2011 Dan Milliken 21

Today’s category is…

A Song That No One Would Expect You To Love.

Here are the staff picks:

Dan Milliken: “3 Peat” – Lil Wayne

My friends all think I’m a big wimp. They’re right. But I do like Wayne. (Though even in this case, I’m drawn to the vulnerability in the song more than the aggression.)

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The 30 Day Song Challenge: Day 25

June 3, 2011 Dan Milliken 17

Today’s category is…

A Great Song That You Discovered After Everybody Else Already Heard It.

Here are the staff picks:

Dan Milliken: “Lord I Hope This Day is Good” – Don Williams

What can I say? I like to think I have a strong overview-type knowledge of country music, but I guess everyone’s got some inexplicable holes in their cultural patchwork. I’ve known of this classic by name for years and have listened through a fair amount of other Don Williams, but I’d never actually bothered to fire the song up until Leeann used it as her pick for one of these categories the other day. Good stuff, though.

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