Remember when Florida Georgia Line said they were taking a break from radio following their last single ‘Anything Goes’? Wasn’t that a nice few weeks when we believed that?
I don’t know whether they actually meant they would take a break following the fifth single from their second record, ‘Confession’, or whether they said that about the previous one and the label overruled them, but I do know that they’re not all that far away from finishing their third record. That means that through this complicated mess of who said what and what they meant by that, it won’t be long before a lead single from a new record will be ready to go to radio. So with a fifth single announced and likely with a slower run on the charts than their previous ones (labels put less promotion behind a final single), it may be done by Spring next year. I wouldn’t be surprised if the album is done by then and Big Machine want to send a brand new single to radio to get things moving. So no break, unfortunately.
But onto the song. ‘Confession’ is probably their best effort at recording a good song since ‘Dirt’, and while it’s hardly Song of the Year material, it does at least stray from that incessant party narrative that can be so moronic in delivery. Of course there is the similar approach to word-painting lyricism that we have come to know from the popular bro fare, and there is something of a ‘Raise ‘Em Up’ nod in the hook, but in general the lyrics describe someone who is driving away from everything to get some headspace, and trying to figure out the problems in their life. This is a marked departure thematically for the duo, and even though they still retain a moment for listeners to raise their beer cans, for the most part they focus on the quiet pensiveness and solitude of the main character. Of course, it could be improved by less cluttered word-painting and more direct handling of emotions, but I’ll take what I can get with a group like Florida Georgia Line.
Sonically it’s fairy generic, utilizing a slow to mid-tempo pace that is driven by echo-y rock drums and down-strummed electric guitars, before falling into their usual synthed banjo wall of sound for the chorus. Still, we’ve heard much worse from them, and generally they keep to the arena rock sound albeit with more layers of instrumentation. It doesn’t stand out anywhere near as much as the rest of their repertoire, but in a way that’s a blessing as it’s actually tolerable musically without sacrificing what their fans will like.
Perhaps instead of a break they thought it would be better to release something designed to soften up their critics before releasing something ridiculous again come next year. After all, ‘Dirt’ did wonders for their reputation, even if it was a thinly-veiled pandering attempt and not actually that great of a song – just in comparison.
We’ll see what’s next for the bro kings, and how they may attempt to change the tide in their favor – for now, I don’t mind ‘Confession’ being on the radio. Perhaps if it’s successful they’ll be reminded that releasing good songs is a viable career option too.
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