If you would ask me to name artists which made me listen (modern) country music, Luke Bryan would be definitely quite on the top of my list. The more, it is surprising that the genre’s megastar hasn’t made it to a Flyctory.com review yet. He was originally scheduled to release his album Born Here, Live Here, Die Here on 24th April 2020 – but finally the album has been delayed until 7th August 2020 due to Covid-19.
Luke Bryan – About The Artist
Luke Bryan – or Thomas Luther Bryan – is one of these artists, who give me the impossible task to sum up their bio appropriately in a way which fits into this blog’s format. He initially planned to move to Nashville also in late teenage years, but changed his plans after his older brother died in a car accident at that time. Finally, after studying at Georgia Southern University, he did this step in 2001. He first received reputation in Music City as a songwriter, before he also had a successful solo artist career. Already his 2007 debut single All My Friends Say made it to the Top 10 of the US Hot Country – the corresponding album I’ll Stay Me released in the same year even made it to the second spot in the country album charts. Over the following years, he established himself as one of the top country acts: the 2009 album Doin’ My Thing already sold over a million copies in the US only, any of the four albums in the 2010’s topped the US country charts and also were successful in the (overall) US and Canadian album charts as well as in other countries.
Ten of his songs topped the US Country Singles charts – he was even much stronger on the airplay side. His outstanding position is maybe illustrated well in the American Country Awards of 2012, where he won in nine categories (including Single of the Year and Album Of The Year). On top of that, Bryan is famous for organizing and hosting an annual four night all-inclusive festival vacation to Cancun, Crash My Playa, which is featuring a lot of big stars of the country music scene regularly.
Born Here, Live Here, Die Here – Track by Track
The ten song album lasts 33 minutes.
1. Knockin’ Boots
If you are looking forward to the new Luke Bryan songs, you can easily grab a cold beer (or maybe even a pizza from the Italian restaurant next door…): the first four songs (or: 13 minutes) have all been released before the album has been published. So I don’t need to say too much about Knockin’ Boots anyway. You had more than a year to find out already (release date: 27th June 2019). I like it – and you know already whether you do so as well.
2. What She Wants Tonight
She wants my hands on her body
She wants to burn like she’s made of fire
Said, she ain’t going home till we
Drink every drop of Kentucky dry
Don’t even know what she’ll do when she does it
Palm of her hand, I’m hers in the blink of an eye
She don’t take no and I love
She gets what she wants
And I get to be what she wants tonight
While the ryhthmic, accentuated arrangement of the first track might even feel a bit of “special”, What She Wants Tonight is straight and “traditional” Luke Bryan country rock sound. You like to listen to it when you need some powerful country sounds – and you look forward to see it live on stage on the next tour. Great stuff becomes just pretty solid when you are talented enough to produce too many of these – at least this is what I feel when I look at the quite average Amazon Music ratings. I would definitely prolong the Like it bar with my voting.
3. Born Here, Live Here, Die Here
The soft Luke Bryan sound, the typical country life-home-American-romantic-feeling style by Luke Bryan. On the next Farm Tour, the muscular guys, who drove to the venue on the John Deere, will grab their tissues and wipe away their tears. Luke Bryan simply knows how to touch them.
4. One Margarita
We had one for the rhythmic people, one for the next stadium tour, one for the farm tour – so here are some more summer vibes, Crash My Playa style. One Margarita is just the right tune for a cool drink on a warm evening (or day). After four songs, Luke Bryan made more or less all of his clients happy already. This is why he is big in the business.
5. Too Drunk To Drive
Alcohol and cars are typical US country topics (especially when sung by male artists). The combination of both topics may quickly reach legal boundaries. But Luke Bryan just adds another classic US male country song topic (a nice girl) and is ready for romance:
You can hide my keys, lock the door, maybe we can find something here to do
Maybe wreck some sheets, crash your lips into mine and not even make the news
These four walls are safer than them two lanes
You pour ’em tall when you start whispering my name
Ain’t no blue light, line walkin’, happening tonight
Might sound a bit of ironic – but ain’t that genius somehow as well? I love it – this musical binge drinking definitely entertains me. Hope you had a nice time in that night, Mr Luke! The song at least suggests it.
6. Build Me A Daddy
Could you build me a daddy?
Strong as Superman
Make him 10 feet tall with a southern drawl and a crooked smile if you can
‘Cause I sure miss him
Maybe you could bring him back?
If I walked in with him, it’d sure make Momma happy, if you could build me a daddy
This intense ballad is just a lovely piece on the album. I love the storytelling and songwriting – and finally it also shows (again) that Luke Bryan is great in these kind of songs as well.
7. Little Less Broken
When the album starts with so many songs you in fact do know already, you are even more thrilled to listen to new songs, ain’t you? And I have to say I love Little Less Broken. We got the seventh song on the album so far – and any song has a very different character. This one has a touch of classic tunes to me. Feels like a waste of time to me that Bryan masters this one as well.
8. For A Boat
This song is somehow reminding that Luke Bryan was born in comparably simple country life style and that the family was Too broke for a boat. By that, the song pretty strongly links to the title track of the album. It is the first song on this album I would not assign to the very top rankings of songs – but it is pretty solid.
9. Where Are We Goin’
While I struggled slightly with the boat topic, I really enjoy this song. Nice arrangement, a bit of pop, nice female background voice arrangement – this could by the way be a good track for the European market.
10. Down To One
Are we really done already? Unfortunately… Tenth track, the finale. Down To One is one of these songs which I would assign the “classic Luke Bryan sound” property to. Maybe rather on the softer side of Bryan’s musical work than on the rocking track one. Nice finish.
Born Here, Live Here, Die Here – Spotify
Here is the Spotify widget to Born Here, Live Here, Die Here:
Born Here, Live Here, Die Here – My View
I love Luke Bryan and that album gives me Luke Bryan in a classic Luke Bryan sound – so there is no doubt I have to love it. On the other hand, I have to admit that there are negative spots. First of all, I thought about a posting I am working on: for the European market, the album might be a bit too thin (again). 33 minutes is not a bummer for a “superstar” – and in fact the new tunes are limited as you knew a lot of the songs before. You have to take it as the American market is running at the moment: an album is more or less the ultimate possibility to cash in. Putting that aside, the album is of course simply a great one – or what is called a Top Pick! on Flyctory.com.
US Country Music Reviews
Other Top Picks
Here are all other reviews which I rated as excellent and assigned the Top Pick! Award: