Florida Georgia Line’s continued heights of success continue to mystify me. I mean, I do have to admit that it’s impressive how they have managed to sustain an entire career from one narrative, one melody, one arrangement, one beat, and one auto-tune setting. Many have tried to replicate this formula but none of them have come close to the sheer audacity, the sheer lunacy, the sheer musical porridge of this duo. And for that, they, or their marketing team (most likely the latter) should be celebrated in a business sense. They’ve made a pretty penny out of shit on a conveyor belt and taking the obnoxious anti-intelligence of Jason Aldean to the next level.
‘Anything Goes’, the title track from their sophomore album (which feels as if it came out two years ago, such is my quick fatigue with its offerings), is perfectly indicative of them literally recording the same song over and over again, and not even bothering to change a few notes, or something. The lyrics make even less sense than their previous moronic releases, with lines such as “big stars breaking out through the indigo, Chevy wind coming in and stereo,” “phone blowing up where you is,” “lime on the rim of that Dixie silver, smokin’ up a faded out 4×4,” and “somebody rockin’ that bang box, everybody hitting that sweet spot.” Reading some of these lines carefully in their written form I understand the basis of what they’re probably singing about, but all thrown in together with a bunch of seemingly miscellaneous nouns, adjectives and not a lot of good grammar or filler words, then sung in a monotone melody over a wad of auto-tune, and I am lost. And not in the sense of being lost in the complexity of a song and a poetic narrative. I just mean lost in a “Y U NO SPEEK ENGLISH?” kind of way.
Like their other songs, ‘Anything Goes’ begins with an impenetrable wall of sound that probably includes electric guitars, drums, and electric banjo, but honestly it’s hard to tell, being such an ugly vat of mush. There are also vocal edits on the refrain (which features a truly inspiring rhyme), “Alabama on the boombox baby, ‘bout to get a little boondock crazy,”. If I heard just the instrumental track (ha, instrumental, like everything here’s a real instrument), then I would honestly not be able to tell which of their songs it was. I would probably just say that’s the one they use in every song. Because isn’t it?
True, songs like ‘Sun Daze’ and ‘Sippin’ On Fire’ sounded different in places for negative reasons (the former for its ruining of reggae, the latter for its undesirable R&B beat), and I’m certainly not advocating going back to something like that. But there’s not even a distinctive hook on this track, and there’s so little movement in the drone melody that the only real way for fans to sing along is to shout in a constant, off-key pitch. They’ll be mumbling too, since the lyrics are so wordy and don’t make enough logical sense for them to be very memorable. There’s one thing having dumb lyrics, there’s another thing having dumb lyrics that even dumb people can’t sing along to. Really, that’s a dumb move.
I can’t summon up the energy to go to town on this song because there’s nothing really worth picking apart. It’s just noise, full of empty sentiments and clumsy rhyming, and even Florida Georgia Line themselves seem to be struggling to keep it going.