Lady Antebellum - Need You Now
Lady Antebellum's second album Need You Now has already sold more than a million copies Stateside - and it's not hard to see why. They practise a brand of radio-friendly country pop that brings to mind massive country-crossover artists like Shania Twain and The Dixie Chicks with recent single "Need You Now" sounding like it should be playing underneath the trailer for a big Hollywood chick flick. This is an album with absolutely no pretence to hidden depths, either musically or lyrically - they might actually have a machine which turns the songs out, so formulaic are they. Not that the formula doesn't work: the pop songs swell into big choruses, and the more melancholy numbers, well, they sometimes swell into big choruses too, but with acoustic guitar instead of electric. Lyrically, it's so clichéd it hurts, all open highways and endless summer days. For the most part though, it works, largely due to Hilary Scott and Charles Kelley, the group's powerful vocalists and the fact that no matter how trite, a big chorus is a big chorus, and this is a record with plenty of those to spare. If you're not already "a little bit country", it won't convince you, but if you are, this could easily soundtrack your summer.