Jake Owen – American Love (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 37:53 minutes | 436 MB | Genre: Country
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Front Cover | © RCA Records Nashville
American Love is the fifth studio album by American country music artist Jake Owen. American Love sounds most authentically Owen. Full of diversity, American Love shows the many sides of his personality and all the while gives fans the perfect summer album for their busy lives. Whether road tripping or relaxing by the water, Owen’s American Love is a fitting soundtrack for those living out their own American lives.
American Love arrives three years after 2013’s Days of Gold – not an exceptionally protracted delay but long enough to suggest there was some behind-the-scenes tinkering afoot, a suspicion supported by the fleet rise and fall of “Real Life” in 2015. That single isn’t on American Love but it’s not missed, not with Jake Owen returning to the sunny disposition that marked his big breakthrough, Barefoot Blue Jean Night. On the whole, American Love isn’t as strident as that 2011 album, a record so gleaming it generated a glare when it hit direct sunlight, but its relative mellowness masquerades a certain slyness in its construction. This album may flow easy but it has some modern tricks: “After Midnight” pulsates to its throwback analog synths, “Good Company” glides upon a beach breeze, and “If He Ain’t Gonna Love You” bounces along to a disco beat that is barely disguised. These selections, strategically sequenced throughout the record, reveal a livelier, savvier country than the bro country that Owen mined on his earlier records. Make no mistake, he’ll still crank up the amplifiers and turn out arena-filling anthems, but even those tunes contain a slight air of maturation; it’s party music with a bittersweet streak. It’s an appealing blend of moods that Owen accentuates by modulating his delivery, choosing to lie back instead of lean into the songs, a tactic that gives the lighter moments a melancholy pull and the ballads a bit of grace. Often, the best moments of American Love are the softest: a sunbleached slice of regret called “LAX,” the skillful adult contemporary pop of “You Ain’t Going Nowhere,” and the slow churn of “Where I Am,” each of which benefits from Owen’s light touch, which now feels weathered, not boyish. Even so, this light weariness is a grace note to an album that ultimately is about sunlit good times, but it’s enough to give American Love some resonance.
01 – American Love
02 – After Midnight
03 – Where I Am
04 – Everybody Dies Young
05 – VW Van
06 – Good Company
07 – LAX
08 – If He Ain’t Gonna Love You
09 – When You Love Someone
10 – You Ain’t Going Nowhere
11 – American Country Love Song