What has always made Country such a strong genre is the artist’s ability to create songs that opened up a picture into who they are through relatable stories of everyday life. While times have changed and the music has evolved, at the core of the songs there still needs to be connectability between listener and artist and that is what Canaan Smith has achieved with his first full-length album Bronco. Led by his hit single “Love You Like That” and containing all the familiar songs from his EP, Canaan Smith uses this album like a diary that invites us to discover who he is as an artist and also who he is outside of the limelight. The clap-a-long groove of “Stomping Grounds” pulls you in as he takes us on a journey to where he came from through memorable moments such as graduation, playing football, the first kiss in the back of a Silverado, etc… He continues to introduce who he is on songs such as the “Love You Like That” and “One Of Those,” the second of which contains lines such as “raised on the Bible but there’s some devil in my bones.” He balances the album around catchy grooves on songs such as the Friday night anthem “Hole In A Bottle,” a gritty side on “American Muscle,” and a slower side on “Bronco,” his touching tribute to his older brother Nathaniel, who died in a car crash when Canaan was only 12. It’s a very rare occurrence today that an album comes along that contains a collection of songs that would all make perfect radio singles and also carries depth, but that’s exactly what Canaan Smith has delivered. From top to bottom, this is an album where you will want to hear every song, effectively making the skip button an obsolete function.
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