Ashley McBryde – Never Will

Ashley McBryde - Never Will



4.4/5 Pros

  • Eleven good songs
  • The outstanding song "Stone"
  • Wide variety of country music styles Cons

  • One or two outstanding songs would make it even better

Ashley McBryde is not just one of the steadily growing brands in the country music industry, she is also having a strong fanbase in the United Kingdom and Europe. Thus, it is not too surprising that her releasing a new album is in focus on my work. Never Will has been relased on 3rd April 2020.

Ashley McBryde – About The Artist

Ashley McBryde was born on 29th July 1983 in Waldron in Western Arkansas. After school and University, she self-released her self-titled debut album and moved to Nashville. In 2009 and 2010, she set an initial focus on her, when she won the Country Showdown, a country music artist competition with roughly 100,000 participants, in both years. In 2011, Elsebound was her second album. Her breakthrough finally was after she released her first EP Jalopes & Expensive Guitars in 2016. Eric Church discovered her music and she performed with him onstage. The first song which draw attention on McBryde was A Little Dive Bar in Dahlonega, which was named to be one of the 25 best country songs by Rolling Stone magazine. The song made it to the top 30 of the US Country charts and is still her best chart placement so far. The corresponding album, Girl Going Nowhere released in 2018 made it to the seventh spot in the US country charts. The album as well as the title track both got nominations at the Grammy Awards.


Ashley McBryde – Never Will – Track by Track

The eleven track album lasts 39 minutes.

1. Hang In There Girl

Hang In There Girl has aready been released before the album. A typical Ashley McBryde song: straight, powerful, guitars, a melody you remember. Maybe not her best one ever written, but a good song.

2. One Night Standards

It’s just a room key
You ain’t gotta lie to me
Can’t you just use me like I’m using you?
How it goes is, bar closes
There’s no king bed covered in roses
Just a room without a view
I don’t want a number, you ain’t gonna answer
Let’s just stick to the one night standards

No more comment. That’s what I love about Ashley McBryde. Clear and straight storywriting,. The arrangement of the song is nice as well.

3. Shut Up Sheila

Shut Up Sheila is a fascinating song to me. Starting very slow, but then getting more and more intense, dealing with morale around a family affair. Catching!

4. First Thing I Reach For

For First Thing I Reach For, Ashley McBryde choses a very classic country arrangement. Quite compact lyrics, but a great flavor of music in this album.

5. Voodoo Doll

I keep smelling cigarettes
Feel that pretty black dress slipping off her back
I don’t drink rum but I’m chasing it
Roll another cloth, every drop, you ain’t wastin’ it
Those lips on her neck, heel in my chair
Ooh, she’s makin’ my skin crawl
You got yourself a voodoo doll

This angry track about lost love is one of the most impressive tracks of the album – especially as the guitars blast this chorus. Ashley is even shouting in this track. Wow!

6. Sparrow

Tough transition on this album to move from a Voodoo Doll to a Sparrow. Good song about being on tour all time to pursue the career.

7. Martha Divine

I recently reviewed the album of the Greek Dark Country band Redeye Caravan. Guys, that’s a story for you! There is no hidden message in this one, Ashley McBryde simply describes how a person wants to kill her daddy’s affair with a shovel. The song has a very happy atmosphere by that. Great!

Martha Divine, Martha Divine
You put your hands on the wrong damn man this time
Martha Divine, your ass is mine
And it ain’t murder if I bury you alive
Martha Divine

8. Velvet Red

Velvet Red is another very classic sounding Ashley McBryde song, a family story around red wine. A nice track, but definitely not the most prominent one on the album.

9. Stone

Stone is likely the most emotional and powerful track on the album. In the slow song, Ashley McBryde works up the death of her brother. We were cut from the same stone – you just feel like hugging Ashley and telling her your’re sorry, when you listen to it. Masterpiece!

10. Never Will

After the intense StoneNever Will is a well-done country rock track. A song a about her musical career.

11. Styrofoam

Styrofoam has likely the most unlikely and unexpected arrangement of all songs on the album. McBryde feels like reading the verses, the chorus is then sung. As unusual as doing a song about styrofoam.


Ashley McBryde – Never Will – Spotify

Here is the Spotify widget to pre-listen to Never Will:


Ashley McBryde – Never Will – My View

Well done, Ashley! Eleven songs with quite a wide range of topics – and musical orientation. Very classic country tunes as well as Voodoo Doll, which partially feels like Country Hard Rock. Ashley gives clear messages and stories in their songs, straight, great storytelling, I just enjoy to listen her. Thus, the Top Pick! banner at the beginning of this review is just hers. No doubt.


Ashley McBryde – UK Tour

End of August, Ashley McBryde will play at the Sound of Nashville Festival in Berlin and Zurich. Thereafter, she will do the following UK and Ireland Tour dates:

Tu 01.09.2020 Belfast (UK), Limelight
We 02.09.2020 Dublin (IRE), The Academy
Fr 04.09.2020 London (UK), The Roundhouse
Sa 05.09.2020 Brighton (UK), Chalk
Su 06.09.2020 Bristol (UK), SWX
Tu 08.09.2020 Leeds (UK), Leeds University Stylus
Th 10.09.2020 Glasgow (UK), Barrowlands
Fr 11.09.2020 Manchester (UK), O2 Ritz
Sa 12.09.2020 Lutterworth, The Long Road Festival


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