Dan + Shay – Bigger Houses

Dan + Shay - Bigger Houses



3.6/5 Pros

  • Typical Dan + Shay sound
  • Rather relatable album Cons

  • No really big song on the album.

Love them or not – finally, you just have to admit that the duo Dan + Shay lifted country pop music to another level on the global market. Especially collaborations like the one with Justin Bieber were massively successful in many markets, which are not really known for a huge country music fan base. On 15th September 2023, the US-Americans released their fifth album Bigger Houses. I was ally curious before this review.


Dan + Shay – About The Artists

Dan + Shay are Dan Smyers and Shay Moroney. The Nashville-based duo are active since 2013. One year later, they already released their debut album Where It All Began. The album made it to the top of the US Country Album Charts. Their biggest success as a single has been the song 10,000 Hours released with Justin Bieber, which has been released in 2019, received golden and platinum records in many markets. The song has almost one billion streams on Spotify only. However, other songs by Dan +Shay like Tequila and Speechless (both released in 2018) have about half a billion listens each on the platform, too. Their most recent album has been the 2021 album Good Thingswhich peaked second in the US Country album charts and fourth in the corresponding ones in the UK. You find more bio about the duo in its review (see link).


Dan + Shay – Bigger Houses – Track by Track

The twelve song album lasts 38 minutes.

1. Breakin’ Up With a Broken Heart

The opener Breakin’ Up With a Broken Heart is typical Dan + Shay sound track. An undeniable country music core, but the production of the song feels rather than a pop song, somehow with a boy band swag. Many positive and warm vibes. Overall, a nice listen.

2. Save Me The Trouble

Save Me The Trouble has been the most successful song of the pre-album campaign. Some nine million streams on Spotify only, 22 million total in all platforms. Definitely some nice figures – but a bit of weak compared to the duo’s most successful songs. The song is a bit too soft to me. I rather feel a good country song nor a good pop track here (any more).

3. Heartbreak On The Map

Save Me The Trouble also opens a section of four previously released songs on the album. Overall, six out of twelve songs are already known by the fans. I can much more relate to Heartbreak On The Map than to the predecessor. It is a rather straight country music balld, Dan + Shay style. The kitsch level is high again, though.

4. Always Gonna Be

Beer drinkin’ kids on a backroad
Good country songs on the radio
Tailgates fallin’ down on a Friday
Long goodbye kisses in the driveway
Long as the sun keeps comin’ up
Long as the Mississippi River runs
Baby, just like you and me
Some things are always gonna be

You see the US-American flag in the music video preview on the bottom. This song is definitely the country music stereotypical lyrics slammer of the album. The North American market enjoys songs like Always Gonna Be – even though I feel that they already listened to better ones of its kind. Still a song with a nice potential for a sing-a-long on Dan + Shay concerts.

5. For The Both of Us

Dan Smyers on the piano covered with some flowers, a black and white recording – the video already tells you that this song is made to deeply touch your heart. The song is about asking your lover’s father for her hand in marriage. Cheesy stuff.

I’m in love with your daughter
And I’ve been since the first time I saw her
I’ll ask her the question if you give your blessin’
When she takes my hand, you can trust
I’ll love her enough for the both of us

6. Then Again

Then Again reminds me of the country pop style the duo recorded in the past. They became very successful with these tunes. And I do like this sixth track of the album. However, the song is just not as good as recordings they delivered in the late 2010’s.

7. Heaven + Back

A nice hook, a catchy melody and a good rhythm – Heaven + Back is one of my favorites, even though it is not one of the six songs the duo and their team has picked in the feature singles. The song is not overwhelmingly deep, but it is an entertaining, easy listen.

8. What Took You So Long

I have to admit that I am not the biggest Dan + Shay. The more I have to say that this section of the album feels to be the heart of Bigger Houses to me. Dan + Shay sounds like Dan + Shay. Love it or hate it – but they blend country vibes and the ease of pop to their signature sound. Yeah, there is a quite a boost on the emotions. But songs like What Took You So Long feel very relatable to me.

9. Missing Someone

Missing Someone is a very intimate ballad. Might not me the worst soundtrack for a romantic experience, even though it is about a break-up. Overall, the song does not leave too much of a mark in my mind.

10. We Should Get Married

Oh, we should get married, take it out to Vegas
Find a little chapel, hire us an Elvis
Pink limousine, longhorns on the hood
Drinkin’ champagne out the sunroof, we could
Get you in a white dress, I could rent a cheap suit
Feed each other weddin’ cake, book a little honeymoon
Seven days in Paris, yeah, I’m talkin’ Tennessee
Ain’t no point in waitin’, baby, I’ve been sayin’
We should get married

I’m not sure if it’s going to be a successful marriage if your honeymoon heads to Pairs, Tenessee (they have an Eiffel Tower replica there…) instead of the French capital. But at least the rockabilly style of the chorus adds an interesting touch to the album. And the rocking style. And the steel guitars. And… The song feels a bit packed with musical ingredients to me. But it creates a funny atmosphere and makes you move to its groove. Thus, it makes me smile.

11. Neon Cowgirl

My comments on Neon Cowgirl are rather similar to What Took You So Long. Yeah, the is quite some kitsch in this sound again. But the song sounds like Dan + Shay. You feel that it is a song by this duo from the very first moment. And it is a good write. I like it.

12. Bigger Houses

The duo farewells the listener with the title track of the album, Bigger Houses. The song is on the one hand about being happy with where you are, but also comes with quite some typical country life metaphors. Not the worst tune to kick us out of the tunes of Bigger Houses.


Dan + Shay – Bigger Houses – Track by Track

Here is Bigger Houses on Spotify:


Dan + Shay – Bigger Houses – Track by Track

I struggled with Good Things and I am not fully happy with Bigger Houses as well. This 2023 album does have some nice listens, indeed. In contrast to the previous release, it does not have a really big song, though. However, overall, Bigger Houses feels more balanced and also more relatable to me. Thus, I also like it (slightly) more than the 2021 release.

Favorite Song: Heaven + Back


USA-related postings in 2023

Here are all my posts related to the USA and released in 2023:


Food I Had Onboard

My bites and drinks on flights and trains are shown in Food I Had Onboard:


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