I know the sense is that music is always getting worse and there will never be any improvement, but the end of 2014 had some promising signs with the decline of Bro-Country. Unfortunately though, where Bro-Country ended, Metro-Politan began, and now we have a new generation of artists and songs to contend with in the effort to saving country music. Here are some of 2015’s worst offenders so far.
NOTE: Except for in rare circumstances, a song has to be released as a single to be considered. The songs are in no particular order.
Thomas Rhett – “Crash & Burn”
Like Mephistopheles himself gorged on a diet of the most grotesquely valueless souls, and then 36 hours of insidious churning in the innermost bowels of hell amidst unholy gastric juices eventually putrefied a malevolent impaction to be shot out of the Satanic anus like a worm-riddled disease baby, Thomas Rhett has unleashed a new single on the planet called “Crash and Burn.”
May the ghost of the great Sam Cooke kick Thomas Rhett’s ass eternally for ripping off the iconic rhythm and cadence from the classic American standard “Chain Gang” in such an open and arrogant manner that even a villainous bystander like Vanilla Ice would give this the hairy eyeball. “Evolution” in today’s country music is simply a code word for filching something from another genre as the result of the relative vacuum of new ideas in the country medium, and Thomas Rhett and producers read full review)left so much of their DNA over the crime scene of this caper it would make a rape kit envious of the swabable masses lingering behind this messy and haphazard ruse. Someone rustle up the bulldog legal team for Marvin Gaye and get them under retainer for the Sam Cooke estate post haste. (
Bret Michaels – “Girls On Bars”
Well look what the cat dragged in, it’s Bret Michaels from Poison with his Maybelline eyes giving a new definition to the term “coyote ugly” with his caustic and aggressively-unoriginal song “Girls On Bars.” Congratulations country music, your hair metal phase has just graduated from figurative to literal.
He pretty much just released the worst country song ever. It’s not as much sick as it is sad, like it’s a musical illustration of the onset of America’s torpid devolution. Even the video looks like it was made by a bunch of grabasstic high school stoners using 20-year-old deprecated public school media lab equipment rented from the public library as a stop gap solution to a local ISD’s budgetary shortfall. When the camera goes all POV and starts twirling round on the top of a bar, I thought I was suffering from motion sickness. Then I figured out that no, it’s just that this song really really blows to the point of causing debilitating gastrointestinal direst. (read full review)
Sam Hunt – “Take Your Time”
Can’t Sam Hunt just move on to being one of those people who is famous for being famous and get bounced out of the third round of Dancing with the Stars or box Tonya Harding on Pay Per View or something? Why does Sam Hunt even exist in anything resembling the country music world? He’s the country music equivalent of a malapropism. “Take Your Time” is the worst song that could have been chosen for Sam Hunt’s second single from and album chock full of bad ideas and boiling over with non-country influences and arrangements.
Some will tell you Sam Hunt and “Take Your Time” is simply country music “evolving,” yet once again the theory of evolution in the minds of country music’s powers that be has to do with dredging up a 30-year-old antiquated and outmoded form of expression in a misguided attempt to pander to the trends of today. Gee I can’t wait until country music’s “evolution” gets to the mid 80’s and country stars are dancing around on stage in spandex onesies with televisions on their heads. (read full review)
Randy Houser – “We Went”
Some bad songs make you angry that such a monstrosity would ever be released under the country banner. Some make you sad for what country music has become. This one? Randy Houser’s entry into this new R&B sexy time Bee Gees-inspired country music disco craze? This thing had me laughing out loud so hard from being so embarrassing and absurd, I had milk shooting out of my nose. And I wasn’t even drinking milk at the time.
To hear the festively plump, bordering on 40-something Randy Houser pseudo-rapping about running from the cops through cornfields with his hot lover had me in stitches to say the least. If you need any more validation that modern country music is nothing more than escapism of the mind for bored suburbanites with shallow understandings of rural life, look no further. Randy Houser could never put enough hair gel and highlights in his 40-year-old’s faux hawk to make this thing seem either respectable or relevant. This songs’s got more pander in it than the Beijing zoo. (read full review)
Chris Jansen – “Buy Me A Boat”
Brilliantly crafted to be fiercely relevant during Bro-Country’s utmost height in 2013, Chris Janson has country music pitching a tent in its pants after peaking on the iTunes charts due to country radio scourge Bobby Bones spinning this frapish timewaste on his syndicated radio show, and mindless consumers rushing out to buy it because it reminds them of the good ol’ days of Brantley Gilbert, and more importantly, because they were told to by the domineering voice emanating from their speakers.
As Bill Parcells once said, put the anointing oil away. This is a Florida Georgia Line starter kit with a drum machine beat, Stratocaster-fueled wank-off guitars, ultra clichÃ© über laundry list lyrics, all compiled in a most unfortunate and shallow audio offering that profiteered off the fact that American radio ownership has been allowed to unfairly consolidate into these gargantuan juggernauts that can turn a play or two on a radio show into historic mountain moving events. Chris Janson becomes the perfect pitchman for exuberant and unhealthy American consumerism in the wholly-unoriginal, culturally-deprecated, and easily-forgettable Bro-Country track. (read full review)
Sam Hunt – “House Party”
From an artist who’s consistently offered the most blindingly non-country songs in the entire 70 year history of the genre, “House Party” is Sam Hunt’s most non-country song overall, if you even can believe that’s possible. What about the banjo you ask? That’s the biggest giveaway that this song is nothing more than a calculated ruse. In an absolute vacuum of country influences, Sam Hunt was forced to add the banjo track or risk exposing the song and the entire calculated project for the sham that it is.
The record scratches, the overt use of Auto-tune as an audio filter, the references to “blowing up phones” and “rattling roofs,” and the Ebonic annunciations are enough to not just alarm country fans, but fans of the integrity of culture in all of its forms, especially black artists who are getting sold out by country carpetbaggers that would appropriate and water down everything cool in their culture until there’s nothing left to pilfer in the bankrupting of American culture at large. I would call this the worst country song ever, but even that would endow it with a modicum of potential country music affiliation that it is not qualified to carry. (read full review)
” Luke Bryan – “Kick The Dust Up (read “Why ‘Kick The Dust Up’ Is More Than Just A Bad Song“)
” Cole Swindell – “Ain’t Worth The Whiskey” (read review)
” Zac Brown Band – “Beautiful Drug” (read review)
” Brett Eldredge – “Lose My Mind” (read review)
” Granger Smith – “Backroad Song” (read review)
” Kelsea Ballerini – “Love Me Like You Mean It” (read review)
” Eli Young Band – “Turn It On” (read review)
” Gary Allan – “Hangover Tonight” (read review)
” Hunter Hayes – “21”
…and many more to come.