American Love

American Love

by Jake Owen

CD

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Overview

American Love arrives three years after 2013's Days of Gold -- not an exceptionally protracted delay but long enough to suggest there was some behind-the-scenes tinkering afoot, a suspicion supported by the fleet rise and fall of "Real Life" in 2015. That single isn't on American Love but it's not missed, not with Jake Owen returning to the sunny disposition that marked his big breakthrough, Barefoot Blue Jean Night. On the whole, American Love isn't as strident as that 2011 album, a record so gleaming it generated a glare when it hit direct sunlight, but its relative mellowness masquerades a certain slyness in its construction. This album may flow easy but it has some modern tricks: "After Midnight" pulsates to its throwback analog synths, "Good Company" glides upon a beach breeze, and "If He Ain't Gonna Love You" bounces along to a disco beat that is barely disguised. These selections, strategically sequenced throughout the record, reveal a livelier, savvier country than the bro country that Owen mined on his earlier records. Make no mistake, he'll still crank up the amplifiers and turn out arena-filling anthems, but even those tunes contain a slight air of maturation; it's party music with a bittersweet streak. It's an appealing blend of moods that Owen accentuates by modulating his delivery, choosing to lie back instead of lean into the songs, a tactic that gives the lighter moments a melancholy pull and the ballads a bit of grace. Often, the best moments of American Love are the softest: a sunbleached slice of regret called "LAX," the skillful adult contemporary pop of "You Ain't Going Nowhere," and the slow churn of "Where I Am," each of which benefits from Owen's light touch, which now feels weathered, not boyish. Even so, this light weariness is a grace note to an album that ultimately is about sunlit good times, but it's enough to give American Love some resonance.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/29/2016
Label: Rca
UPC: 0888750701527
catalogNumber: 507015
Rank: 65642

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Jake Owen   Primary Artist,Background Vocals,Hand Clapping
Dan Dugmore   Pedal Steel Guitar
Russ Pahl   Pedal Steel Guitar
David Wallace   Electric Guitar
Fred Eltringham   Percussion,Drums,Loops
Derek Wells   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Matt Stanfield   Piano,Keyboards,Hammond B3
Lee Hendricks   Bass
Robby Emerson   Bass
Shane McAnally   Background Vocals
Scotty Huff   Trumpet
Myron Howell   Percussion,Drums
Tony Lucido   Bass
Hillary Lindsey   Background Vocals
Rob McNelley   Electric Guitar
Jaren Johnston   Background Vocals
Ross Copperman   Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Background Vocals
Aaron Sterling   Percussion,Drums
Luke Laird   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Chris Stapleton   Background Vocals
Ryan Gore   Tambourine,Hand Clapping
Erin McCarley   Background Vocals
Stephanie Chapman   Background Vocals
Josh Osborne   Acoustic Guitar,Background Vocals
Danny Rader   Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Tres,Wurlitzer,Hammond B3
Lukas Bracewell   Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Electric Guitar,Ukulele,Guitar (Nylon String)
Joseph Arick   Harmonica,Piano,Keyboards,Hammond B3
Jovan Quallo   Saxophone
Nir "Z" Zidkyahu   Percussion,Drums
Josh Scalf   Trombone

Technical Credits

Joe Baldridge   Engineer
F. Reid Shippen   Engineer
Shane McAnally   Producer
Tony Lucido   Engineer
Ross Copperman   Programming,Producer,Engineer
Aaron Sterling   Engineer
Jake Owen   Producer
Luke Laird   Programming,Producer
Ryan Gore   Engineer
Lukas Bracewell   Programming,Producer,Engineer
Joseph Arick   Programming
Zack Pancoast   Engineer

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