Single Review: Dierks Bentley, “Black”

Dierks Bentley

Written by Dierks Bentley, Ross Copperman, and Ashley Gorley

It’s a given that Dierks Bentley is among the most talented artists of his generation, and one of the most ambitiously creative as well.

There are hints of that ambition on “Black,” the new single that also serves as the title track for his most recent album. The concept is original, and there’s a slowly building urgency under the surface of the first verse and chorus, almost like a low-grade fever waiting to break.

But it doesn’t. The whole proceedings come to a screeching halt with a remarkably bad melody that stretches the song title out from one to eight or nine syllables, more than Reba McEntire would’ve attempted at her histrionic peaks.

The lyrics run out of juice, too, with a barely formed second verse that ends too quickly, and then rote repetition of the chorus that didn’t pay off the first time.

It’s a disappointing entry from an artist who is capable of so much more.

Grade: C-


  1. I am SO ready to put this era of Dierks Bentley behind us. How did things get so bad so quickly??

    To be fair, this is the best single from the album thus far. The melody’s nice and sticks in the brain, but you’re so right about how the fever never breaks; even when Bentley and Ross Copperman (producer) think the song’s built to this huge crescendo, it’s still too flimsy to stand.

    C- in my book, too.

  2. I love Dierks Bentley. I still listen to songs from his bluegrass album at least once a week. I think he is smart, talented and a true artist. But to like Dierks you have to always be prepared for something horrendous to come out of his music. ” 5-1-5-0″ ” Sideways” ” I Wanna Make You Close Your Eyes” “Tip It Back”- all terrible songs in their own ways. It is like there is a part of him that is still playing to some college crowd out there. I was so disappointed by this album. I thought ” I’ll Be The Moon” was the only song worth a repeat. Maybe he has no idea how much is expected out of a good artist. ” Riser” was an excellent record. He should have waited a year or so to write a new album. These songs all have “reject” stamped across their forehead. And for a man with two daughters ” Different For Girls ” is an appalling song.

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