Single Review: Hayden Panetierre, "Telescope"

I love how Hayden Panettiere’s “Juliette Barnes” character on ABC’s Nashville supposedly

represents the “adolescent pop” side of country music… and yet somehow still manages to sound more country than half of what’s on country radio today.

I can’t get over how cool this record sounds.  The dobro, the mandolin, the hand claps… I find it nearly irresistible.  “Telescope” tackles the tried-and-true country music theme of cheating with a clever concept and a great hook, while Panettiere rides the catchy beat with an assured performance – subtle when necessary, forceful when appropriate.

My inner critic will step in just long enough to say that the production and background vocals are laid on a bit too thick in some places, particularly toward the end the song, but not to the point of sapping my listening enjoyment.  I can totally get into this.

Grade:  B+

Written by Hillary Lindsey and Cary Barlowe


  1. So the very existence of this all but secures her nomination for Female Vocalist of the Year at next year’s CMAs, right? Kelly Clarkson will keep her spot thanks to the Vince Gill duet, and Hayden Panetierre will take Martina McBride’s.

    I can get on board with the melody in the chorus and with the handclaps, but this still leaves Scream 4 as the only thing she’s done that I’ve really liked without reservation. Nashville has been doing some interesting things with its music choices, but I just don’t think this is much of a song, though it’s better than Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Country Strong” by a pretty substantial margin.

    Nice work on the review, Ben!

  2. I really like the sound of the record, but the lyrics are just stupid. I HATE the repetition in this song. My eyes, my eyes, my eyes…, etc.

    I’m holding off on passing judgement on Hayden and the rest of her Nashville costars. The music isn’t great, but it isn’t terrible either. Time will tell which direction they go in. Also, I’m not really sure of the effect they’ll have on the genre.

  3. So the very existence of this all but secures her nomination for Female Vocalist of the Year at next year’s CMAs, right?

    HA! I was totally thinking the same thing. At first I was going to close the review with “So who wants to bet that Panettiere gets a Female Vocalist nod at next year’s CMAs?” but I forgot.

    The song is definitely not for everyone, and I generally agree that the lyrics could be more solid, but I just think it has a certain “spark” to it, if you know what I mean.

  4. So let’s see would she be up for Entertainer of the year since she sings, dances and acts? I hear when the show, Nashville, slows down she is going out to promote her songs.

  5. Definitely catchy, but I think it’s actually her performance that dampens this song for me. Laura Bell Bundy and LeAnn Rimes would have knocked this out of the park (in different ways). She doesn’t add much to it.

    But I adore this:

  6. But guys, you’re forgetting that Faith Hill also has a new song out! How are we going to handle have six females competing for the five nominations?

    Kidding aside, I agree that this song definitely has a spark to it. I like it!

  7. …while we’re at re-casting and trying to improve the entertainment factor – just picture the clip with jill kelley or paula broadwell playing the part.

  8. I hope everyone keeps in mind that she’s an actress. It’s not like she has creative input. If she ever did get a nomination it would probably have to go to the executive producers of the show. I will say I like her songs more than Rayna’s.

  9. The chorus seems a little clunky to me, but I like the song overall. Given the fact that every good and great song from “Four The Record” has yet to be released as a single, Hayden Panetierre has managed to out-Miranda anything that Miranda Lambert has done in 2012.

  10. The song is okay, the performance is okay – minus the video I’d give it a B if I heard it for the first time on radio

    The video does enhance the perception of the song

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