The King of Country is back.
George Strait released his 28th studio album, Honky Tonk Time Machine, and has it’s been long overdue.
My first thought was: “Is this album good because it’s genuinely good music or does it have to do with a nostalgia of the 80s and 90s country music?” Honestly, both. If some unheard artist cut this album, would we be equally as impressed? Probably not. But thankfully, this is George’s album and it’s like a big hug to the country music many feel has been absent in today’s world.
First of all, George can sing. He sounds fantastic on the album. The songwriting is top notch, particularly with “God and Country Music.” A title so stereotypical country that it could come off as corny, but with George it feels authentic and real. Those two things are really what makes up his life as well as many of his fans.
The best thing about George is his ability to produce timeless songs. These songs could easily have been written in the 90s, just as his songs from that era still hold up today. “Blue Water” and “Take My Away” are both fun songs that are in the same vein as “Blue Clear Sky” or “Check Yes or No.”
True to the album’s title, we are treated to two honky tonk songs. “Every Little Honky Tonk Bar,” somehow makes small dive bar drinking seem like not such a stain on country music. “Honky Tonk Time Machine” gives you that foot stomping, fast talking, steel guitar playing vibe. Goodness we’ve missed you George.
We get a duet with Willie Nelson, appropriately titled “Sing One With Willie.” “Codigo” is a song about a small family-made tequila that George invested in back in 2017. True story.
A lot of people are already talking about perhaps the most emotional song on the album. “The Weight of the Badge” is an ode to the men and women in blue.
Simply put, the album is easy listening. From “Two More Wishes” to “Sometimes Love,” there is a little bit of everything. But most importantly, a whole lot of George, steel guitar, and great lyrics.
I can’t wait to see how this album and these songs navigate the 2019 country music waters.