"You make me wanna roll my windows down and cruise." Florida Georgia Line landed the country hit of the decade in Cruise, which vaulted to the top of the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart on April 20. But it didn't come down – not until August 31, at least. That's 19 weeks at number one! Crazy.
So while I don't think I need to say any more about Cruise, I'd like to point out what a great album Here's to the Good Times is as a whole. The duo is comprised of Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard from Florida and Georgia, respectively. According to their website, the two essentially decided to hit the road and perform after graduating from university in Nashville. Two years and two EPs later, they're one of the hottest acts in country.
Their follow-up Get Your Shine On is a bass-driven, cellphone-waving track – atypical of a country drinking song. "Summer sky drippin' rhinestones/Turn your party lights on/Baby get your shine on." As with a number of their songs, the lyrics aren't easy to make out on the first listen. You could say that the Florida Georgia Line boys are sloppy writers, or that they know how to use slang effectively. I pick the latter.
Round Here, the duo's current single, is another upbeat rocker. However, you'll notice that it does all start to sound the same after a while, lyrically and musically. "We find a little spot on the edge of town/Twist off, sip a little, pass it around."
In It'z Just What We Do, Florida Georgia Line amps it up to a whole new level of grinding guitars. And they're anything but ashamed of their backwoods habits. "Kick back, relax/You know we're just a bunch of hillbillies."
The only heartbreaker on the album is Stay, and while that's not their niche, the guys do a good job of delving into the dark sides of emotion. "I'd sell my soul just to see your face/I'd break my bones just to hear your pain." So yes, they can be "deep" too.
The final song Party People leaves me with a bad takeaway as a mediocre effort, but that doesn't seem to affect Florida Georgia Line's momentum. Another track worth mentioning is Dayum, Baby, a softer ballad with some great imagery and plays on words. "I can see you'll probably be keeping me up all night/Yeah, but that's all right." And you probably won't get that song out of your head anytime soon, either.
To sum it up, Florida Georgia Line was born for radio. Their feel-good harmonies and blazing country/rock sound have crossover potential only fully realized with the remix of Cruise featuring Nelly. Here's to the Good Times is brilliant in the way it hits home with the average fan. The only downside is the lack of lyrics with real substance.
Country Luke's Rating: 8/10
Photo courtesy of https://www.facebook.com/floridageorgialine.