Top critical review
Far too plain and radio-friendly. Must try harder.
on 21 November 2015
No, I'm sorry - after having had a couple of Lady Antebellum tracks in my Country collection for a few years ("Love Don't Live Here" and "Just Looking For a Good Time" from their first 2008 CD) which I have always really liked, I held off getting hold of any more of their music until I reached a black spot in terms of newness, therefore wanting to finally give their extended catalogue a try. I ordered both "Need You Now" and "Own the Night" from Amazon's marketplace concurrently, and have to say that both CDs just leave me utterly flat.
I have now tried to play both several times in my car, but always struggle to land on anything that piques the interest of my ear, and the best I can describe these as is simply un-challenging background music. I was hoping (and reading through other such positive reviews) that their style was a revolutionary approach to country, bringing some of the tired and cliched formulas of recent years kicking and screaming right up to the modern moment. This is NOT the case at all.
The Title track of "Need You Now" is about as good as that album gets, and my main beef is that neither Hillary Scott nor Charles Kelley seem to give any of the lead vocal tracks any real exertion. They are just not there, neither emotionally nor energetically. This may be different on later releases, which I am yet to hear, but it seems they just turned up to the studio, laid these tracks down over a couple of coffees/Budweisers and then popped back home again. These are flat renditions of easy-on-the-ear country and radio-friendly tracks which bore far more than they excite.
As an example - after track #1 on "Need You Now" winds down, I was expecting track #2 "Our Kind of Love" to really lift off and drive the tempo on, as second tracks on albums which follows ballad openers often do. The track actually does start out that way, with a catchy piano melody and with Charles yelling "Here we go!", but then it all goes soft again - weak vocal parts, cheesy lyrics, radio-friendly jangles and a naff chorus. This is the formula for the rest of the CD.
The lack of tempo in both "American Honey" and in "Hello World" left me bored rigid before the CD was even half over. "Perfect Day" then delivers about the most cheesy melodies and lyrics imaginable, so by this point the CD was rapidly ejected from my player.
It is a shame you can't return music due to copyrighting laws, but based on customer DIS-satisfaction, if that option were available to us I would be making full use of my consumer rights after having wasted time and money in the case of "Need You Now". However, if you have minimum musical requirements, don't really require anything challenging, are happy to add yet another bunch of tracks to your collection that sound like anything that have gone before them, and for some reason love country that borders on soul-less pop, then go right ahead and get yourself a copy of "Need You Now".