Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Country, Pop
Though previous releases established Joe Nichols as a traditionalist of uncommon vocal subtlety and emotional depth, the featured tracks on III are comparatively lightweight. Both the album-opening "Size Matters" and the f... more »
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Though previous releases established Joe Nichols as a traditionalist of uncommon vocal subtlety and emotional depth, the featured tracks on III are comparatively lightweight. Both the album-opening "Size Matters" and the first single, "Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off," attach suggestive titles to material that is more like playful hokum. The former stresses the importance of a big heart; the latter concerns a girl who gets innocently careless when she's out barroom dancing. (If Nichols isn't embarrassed to sing the lines "Them panty hose ain't gonna last too long/If the DJ puts Bon Jovi on," he should be.) Yet much of the rest of the album reinforces his stylistic strengths, with "Talk Me Out of Tampa" evoking the conversational phrasing of prime Merle Haggard, "Should I Come Home (Or Should I Go Crazy)" channeling the inspiration of retro George Jones, and "I'll Wait for You" wringing every last tear from a stone cold country weeper. As Patty Loveless did on Dreamin' My Dreams, which came out a month earlier, Nichols also covers Steve Earle's "My Old Friend the Blues," which appears on its way to becoming a contemporary country standard. --Don McLeese
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Member CD Reviews
Shelba A. (busylady) from ORIENTAL, NC
Reviewed on 7/22/2010...
this guy is new to me...and I love his voice (not to mention his good looks)
adding all his cd's to our collection...my husband and I both enjoy his music/voice
Melissa W. from MARION, IA
Reviewed on 5/16/2010...
I really am glad that I chose to swap for this CD.....turned out to be one of my new favs.
"III"'s the Charm
T. Yap | Sydney, NSW, Australia | 11/16/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Prime Cuts: Tequila Makes Her Dress Fall Off, I'll Wait for You, Size Matters
Within the narrow confines of country music's conservatism, a staccato of titles such as "Tequila Makes Her Dress Fall Off" and "Size Matters" ought to raise eyebrows. In fact, the vanguard single, the aforementioned "Tequila" has already lit up radio lines and hitherto has been Nichols' fastest accelerating chart single. Told with a wry understated humor, "Tequila," a mid-pacer, tells of a lady who has a problem with keeping her covers at the consumption of alcohol. What might sound like a throwaway novelty, in fact, is redeemed by the song's jocular, yet deftly lines, such as "them panty hose ain't gonna last too long/ If the DJ puts Bon Jovi on/She might come home in a table cloth/Yeah, tequila makes her clothes fall off." Nichols' knack for songs with interesting word twists and plays again surfaces in the album opener's "Size Matters." A mulling barnburner with an irascible sounding fiddle, "Size Matters" details the demands of Nichols' lady friend who fancies a man with a big heart.
Creatively entitled "III," Nichols' third album for Universal South Records, eschews the huckerism characterizing those Muzik Mafia acts such as Cowboy Troy and Big and Rich. Rather treading capriciously down the bucolic trails championed by country greats such as Alan Jackson and Randy Travis, producer Buddy Cannon has kept the backings minimal and rustic with plenty of fiddles, steel and acoustic guitars. Even on the upbeat "Honky Tonk Girl," Nichols never for a moment does a misstep on this Texas-styled country romp. Though he is not on the same par yet as Alan Jackson, the fiddle-laden "That's What Love'll Get You" is such a fetching Texas two-step that Alan Jackson would have love to have had in his repertoire. Marrying vintage traditional country with modern sensibility of a thoughtful love song is "Country As She Gets" which finds Nichols bragging about his nature-loving gal.
As Nichols is known for his prowess in crooning a ballad a la "The Impossible," "I'll Wait for You" ought to swoon the hearts of his ballad-loving fans. A piano-based ballad coming from the pens of Harley Allen and Bill Anderson, "I'll Wait for You" is an intense story song about an expecting mother dying at child birth while waiting for her hubby to come home. Be prepared for some tear-inducing moments as Nichols tells this tale with such an affecting élan. It is songs like these that truly make country music such tour de force. Sharing the same theme of departure is "Talk Me Out of Tampa," though couched within a rustic backings, it's nothing as earth shattering as "I'll Wait for You." Steve Earle's moody "My old Friend the Blues" is given a reprise. Since Patty Loveless has also covered this same tune on her latest CD, comparisons are sure to abound. Unlike Loveless, though Nichols offers a pristine read, he somehow fails to capture the lonesomeness of this song's twists in its melody and word choices.
Amongst the numerous CDs coming out from country's male artists, what sets "III" aside are the songs. Kudos are in order to Nichols for stepping outside Music Row's conveyer belt for not being afraid of choosing songs like "I'll Wait for You," "Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off" and "Size Matters." Of all of Nichols' CDs so far, "III" expresses individuality, personality and verve. And as they say three's the charm, "III" indeed is Nichols' charm."
Nichols hits his stride with III
Bob McGrath | Sacramento, CA | 11/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Joe Nichols does it all on III, from heartbreaking ballad to up-tempo (read: radio-friendly) novelty songs to pure honky tonkin' goodness. And he has improved his game across the board. The ballads here - "I'll Wait for You," "Just a Little More," "My Old Friend the Blues," "Talk Me Out of Tampa" - are stronger than earlier Nichols ballads like "That Would Be Her," "Can't Hold a Halo to You," and "Things Like That (These Days)." Novelty songs like "Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off" and "Size Matters (Someday)" are less self-consciously clever than earlier Nichols songs like "Cool to be a Fool" and "Everything's a Thing."
Nichols has always been a great singer, and it's hard to imagine him putting out a bad record. Still, while "Man With a Memory" was an impressive debut and "Revelation" was a fine collection, his sound seemed rooted in contemporary country. Sure, there were occasional nods to traditional country - a Gene Watson cover here (Farewell Party), a Merle Haggard / Iris Dement cover there (No Time to Cry), but filled with quite a bit of enjoyable fluff for radio airplay.
In comparison, III seems to be rooted in traditional country. Nichols' voice works its magic in ways that call to mind George Jones, Merle Haggard, early George Strait, Keith Whitley, Vern Gosdin, Daryle Singletary, and a bunch of other torchbearers for classic country. But it's not imitation; it's uniquely Joe, classic country with a modern bent delivered by one of the best young voices in the business.
He's getting better and better. I'll be first in line for IV."