Luke Bryan - 'Crash My Party'

Country star Luke Bryan makes his debut UK performance next month as the headliner of the first day of this year's Country To Country Festival. Luke's latest full length studio release is 2013's Crash My Party.

The regular edition of the album holds thirteen tracks with a further four released as part of the deluxe edition. The real gem from the album in my opinion has to be Drink A Beer. The striped back instrumentalisation is really effective in highlighting the really touching lyrics, made even more so considering how personal the track is to Luke. Chris Stapleton's distinctive tone is also the perfect foil to Luke's vocal and rounds out the track nicely. I truly hope this finds it's way into Luke's set for Country To Country set list, such a gorgeous track and one of the best showcases of Luke's vocal.

I also really like Roller Coaster. Supported by a strong, solid drum line, the roller coaster imagery in lines such as "just trying to keep my heart on the tracks" is used sparingly but pulls the track together nicely. In my opinion this type of tempo (or slower) is where Luke seems really comfortable as opposed to some of the rockier numbers on the album. It is also definitely worth listening to We Run This Town. There is just the right amount of power in the production without being overpowering  - with the lead coming from the electric guitar line - and it fits in smoothly on the album track listing between the slower and more striped backed Roller Coaster and Drink A Beer.

Luke BryanUnfortunately, there are a few tracks on the album I didn't like. The album opens with one of the rockiest tracks, That's My Kind Of Night with the verses mixing in a short of 'hip hop' style drum line that does nothing to draw listeners in. Overall the track feels a little forgettable, missing a hook to encourage listeners to really fall in love with the track. Lyrically there also doesn't seem to be much depth, "waiting on you to look my way and scoot your hot little self over here" doesn't stand up against tracks such as Drink A Beer at all.

I also found myself skipping Beer In The Headlights about half way through quite often. The two verses are incredibly short so the chorus feels as though it is repeated a lot, along with the frankly poor lyric "girl you're looking so fine, with your beer in the headlights". It's not an intrinsically bad song - from a production point of view especially - and is ultimately better than That's My Kind Of Night but, again, there is nothing there to really hold a listener in my opinion.

Track listing....
1) That's My Kind Of Night - Dallas Davidson, Chris DeStefano, Ashley Gorley
2) Beer In The Headlights - Michael Carter, Bradon Kinney, Cole Swindell
3) Crash My Party - Rodney Clawson, Ashley Gorley
4) Roller Coaster - Michael Carter, Cole Swindell
5) We Run This Town - Ashley Gorley, Dallas Davidson, Kelley Lovelace
6) Drink A Beer - Jim Beavers, Chris Stapleton
7) I See You - Luke Bryan, Ashley Gorley, Luke Laird
8) Goodbye Girl - Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne, Matt Ramsey
9) Play It Again - Dallas Davidson, Ashley Gorley
10) Blood Brothers - Brett James, Bobby Pinson
11) Out Like That - Aaron Goodvin, Adam Sanders, Cole Swindell
12) Shut It Down - Tony Martin, Wendell Mobley, Neil Thrasher
13) Dirt Road Diary - Rhett Akins, Luke Bryan, Dallas Davidson, Ben Hayslip
Deluxe edition....
14) What Is It With You - Luke Bryan, Shane Minor, Jeff Stevens
15) Sunburnt Lips - Thomas Rhett, Lee Brice, Rob Hatch, Lance Miller
16) Better Than My Heart - Luke Bryan, Jeff Stevens, Lonnie Wilson
17) Your Mama Should've Named You Whiskey - Luke Laird, Jeremy Spillman, Thomas Rhett

I had only ever listened to a few of Luke Bryan's songs before he was announced as part of Country To Country but upon listening to more I am pleasantly surprised with the majority of what I've heard! It's clear to me that Luke is stronger in the slower tracks where he can really deliver a heartfelt vocal so it will be interesting to hear what songs we will hear in just over two weeks and what is released in his next full length studio album.