Album Review: Songs for the Saints (Kenny Chesney)
Sitting on the beach in Daytona with a cold drink in your hand, toes in the water, ass in the sand. Its hotter than hell, its 100 in the shade with the sun beating down. Anywhere else it would be too hot, but not during this four-day getaway that you’ve have been looking forward to for months, it’s almost perfect, all you’re missing is just the right playlist to blast from your wireless speaker.
By planning your holiday so that you would be hitting the beach right on Friday, July 27, you will have aligned your vacation perfectly with the release of Kenny Chesney’s newest album, Songs for the Saints. If you were looking for that perfect set of songs to enjoy a cold drink on the beach with and let your troubles melt away, this album may very well be for you.
Chesney is known for being somewhat of a modern-day Jimmy Buffet mixed with his own unique style. After beginning his career with a more traditional country sound and style, Chesney has certainly moved away from mainstream country, towards a mellow and tropical, reggae sound. He showed signs of this in his last two albums, “The Big Revival” and “Cosmic Hallelujah” respectively, however in his current album, Bubba has definitely moved closer to the reggae genre than ever, especially with his song “Love for Love City” featuring Ziggy Marley, son of the most popular reggae artist ever, Bob Marley.
With many current artists, you see albums with a combination of a few fast/upbeat songs, a couple slow, “love-song” style songs, some that are a combination of the two, and maybe one or two relaxing songs (if that) depending on the artist. Kenney Chesney has completely disregarded that trend and opted for an album with two or three fast upbeat songs in “Get Along” and “Ends of the Earth,” and almost the entirety of the album being relaxing beach type songs. This is something that we have not seen in mainstream country music since perhaps the days of Jimmy Buffet’s (who also features on the track “Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season”) peak popularity.
Overall this is an album that may be short of singles which will do well on mainstream radio, except for perhaps “We’re All Here,” “Ends of the Earth,” and of course “Get Along.” Despite the perceived lack of airtime potential due to lack of sound diversity, this is overall a well-produced album. It is not an album that you are going to turn up to on a Friday night while shot gunning Bud Lights and jumping through fires with your wild ass buddies. This is an album that is good for lighting up on the beach and drinking a mojito or cozying up next to the fire with a hot chocolate in the dead of winter. Kenny Chesney has signaled where he is heading as he continues to forge his legacy as an all-time great of the genre and American music as a whole, with an album that makes you want to sip fruity cocktails in a faded beach chair, light up a little green and let the world fade away.
Standout Tracks: Get Along, Pirate Flag, & Ends of the Earth