Thursday, July 29, 2010

Josh Gracin, "Cover Girl"

Country radio has not been kind to this American Idol graduate lately.  Josh Gracin had his most recent Top 10 entry in 2007 with "We Weren't Crazy," but his two subsequent singles missed the Top 30, and his three most recent singles failed to chart.  Josh needs a hit, and he needs one bad.  Why the cold shoulder from country radio?  It seems Josh could only think of one reason:  His music did not sound awful enough.  But rest assured - it sure does now.

Josh's new single, "Cover Girl" is littered with clashing percussion and wailing electric guitars that are heard throughout the song.  I'm not just talking about a little guitar solo in the bridge - I mean throughout the song.  Josh cranks up the loudness in a totally obnoxious and blatantly non-country performance.  If I heard this song on my local country station, I would probably think that it had switched formats.  The production only seems to be missing one thing, and that's the sound of Carrie Underwood digging her key into the side of a pretty little souped-up four-wheel-drive.

Because the terrible production was so hard to get past, I had to find an acoustic version in order to properly scrutinize the song's lyrics.  The disappointingly generic lyrics are basically a sick version of Sammy Kershaw's "She Don't Know She's Beautiful," only stripped of all the fiddles and all the sincerity.  The narrator is drooling over how beautiful his woman is, but he only comes off as a playboy.  Many of the lines (like "Show me what your mama gave you") are just plain ugly.

This trainwreck of a song sounds like everything else on country radio - only worse.  I think country radio is going to need a way better reason to care about Josh Gracin again.  Listen at your own risk.

(Scores are given on a scale of 1 to 10)

To hear this song, click the "Cool New Music" link.