Compared to many bands and artist in country music, Maddie & Tae have it made. They have a #1 song under their belt in “Girl In A Country Song,” another Top 10 in the Gold-certified “Fly,” and their debut record Start Here from 2015 has sold over 100,000 copies. They’ve also been nominated for multiple industry awards, and boast being the “Best Streaming Female Country Duo of All Time” with over 812 million streams—not an incorrect stat since there have been so few female country duos during the streaming era, but worth a time period qualifier anyway.
It’s been hell though trying to get their second full-length album to market. After Maddie & Tae’s initial success, the duo got dropped by Big Machine’s Dot Records after Scott Borchetta bit off more than he could chew and shuttered the imprint, and they eventually signed to Mercury Nashville in June of 2017 to release what they characterized as a conceptualized record about the arc of a romantic relationship.
“So, it’s like a story,” Tae Dye told WYRK now almost two years ago when they first announced the new album was on the way. “Basically, through the whole record, it’s going to start at the beginning of a relationship, and then it’s gonna go into the ‘in love’ phase, then the ‘breakup’ phase, just like it always happens. And then, at the end, it was really important for us to have that redemptive moment … I think anyone is going to be able to relate because you can go through heartbreak in all different settings, in all kinds of friendships and relationships.”
But that’s not how Mercury Nashville released it. Instead, they took Maddie & Tae’s conceptualized effort, and made piecemeal of it into two separate EP’s, One Heart to Another released on April 26th, 2019, and Everywhere I’m Goin’ on October 18th, 2019. The songs were also not disseminated in the order in which Maddie & Tae wanted.
All of that will finally change when the duo releases their sophomore record The Way It Feels on April 10th. The 15-song album will include all 10 tracks from the previously-released EPs, as well as five new ones all co-written by Maddie & Tae. Other songwriters featured include Jonathan Singleton, Josh Kerr, Laura Veltz, Jesse Frasure. The album was produced by Jimmy Robbins and Derek Wells, and will also feature an appearance by Dierks Bentley.
“It has been four years since we’ve released an album,” says Maddie Marlow. “For us, this is a lot more than just an album release. This sophomore album will always be a reminder that no matter the setbacks and struggles, we will come out stronger and better. We are so proud of this 15-song story. We wrote these songs during the most vulnerable times and our hope is that people hear that and connect.”
The announcement of the new album comes after their current single “Die From A Broken Heart” is finally beginning to see some traction. Officially released as a single all the way back on May of 2019, but first heard in October of 2018 and immediately becoming a fan favorite, to say “Die From A Broken Heart” has endured an elongated climb is an understatement. But just in the last few weeks the song cracked the Top 40, and currently resides at #37.
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The Way It Feels Track List:
1. “Everywhere I’m Goin’” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Josh Thompson, Jimmy Robbins)
2. “Bathroom Floor” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Josh Kerr)
3. “My Man” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Dave Barnes, Jordan Reynolds)
4. “Tourist In This Town” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Barry Dean, Jimmy Robbins)
5. “Drunk Or Lonely” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Deric Ruttan, Forrest Whitehead)
6. “One Heart To Another” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Jonathan Singleton, Deric Ruttan)
7. “Trying On Rings” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Laura Veltz, Jimmy Robbins)
8. “Write A Book” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Laura Veltz, Josh Kerr)
9. “Water In His Wine Glass” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Jon Nite)
10. “Ain’t There Yet” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Dave Barnes, Ben West)
11. “Lay Here With Me” (feat. Dierks Bentley) (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Josh Kerr, Dave Barnes)
12. “Friends Don’t” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Jon Nite, Justin Ebach)
13. “Die From A Broken Heart” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Jonathan Singleton, Deric Ruttan)
14. “I Don’t Need To Know” (Maddie Marlow, Taylor Dye, Adam Hambrick)
15. “New Dog Old Tricks” (Laura Veltz, Jesse Frasure, Emily Weisband)