Dustin Lynch - Tullahoma
It's fair to say that Dustin Lynch has had more success in the charts than he's had critically so far in his career. Lynch himself has bemoaned the fact he hasn't had as much control over his output as he'd have liked. But forget that. Forget the seven no.1 country airplay singles. This is all Dustin Lynch, and this is his best album so far, by far.
And it's different from the start, 'Momma's House' isn't as rose-tinted as you might expect, and carries on being a well-balanced mix of country-pop and country-rock. Yes it's commercial, 'Ridin' Roads' has already been a huge hit at radio (and streaming), but it's got a bit more depth to it than that suggests. 'The World Ain't Yours and Mine' has it's own groove and decently evocative lyrics and 'Thinking 'Bout You' is another of those tracks Lauren Alaina is getting a reputation for lifting higher.
There are times when you might wish it was a little more authentic ('Good Girl' is a lowlight), but Lynch is an authentic singer, which means he can carry this off. If this is an indicator of the direction of travel for one of country radio's biggest stars then we should all be happy.