Brad Paisley, “Camouflage”

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It’s November 1st, which means we are just days away from the 45th Annual CMA Awards. So to get ready for Country’s Biggest Night, ATC will post reviews featuring the night’s nominees every day up until the big night of the show. There’s no better way to kick off our Countdown to the CMA’s with a new song from one of the night’s hosts, and five time nominee, Brad Paisley.

Though he’s one of my favorite male country artists, it’s frustrating to see Brad Paisley’s talent wasted on nonsense songs like his new single, “Camouflage.”

“Camouflage” is just another song revolving around a stereotype that country music probably shouldn’t be embracing. With lines about a camo-painted Cavalier “disappearing when it pulls out of the garage” and how the only visible part of a camo laced couple’s prom pictures are their faces and hands, this song is simply a lyrical disaster. However Brad, and fellow co-writers Chris DuBois and Kelley Lovelace, cleverly made sure the chorus was catchy by using a shout and answer technique by using backing vocals to answer Brad’s shouts of “camouflage.” That alone pretty much guarantees this song will be another smash for Paisley.Well and also the fact that country fans love to embrace stereotypes that belittle the genre (“This is Country Music,” “Dirt Road Anthem,” “Redneck Woman”).

Despite the wretched lyrics, the song’s production is one of the finest to come from Mr. Brad Paisley. It’s no secret that Brad is among the genre’s finest guitar players but I don’t think he’s showed it quite as brilliantly prior to this song. He shreds like he’s never shredded before during the vocal lines, but then lets it rip even more during the ending instrumental bars. Along with his fantastic guitar slashing are hints of steel guitar, keyboards, and fiddle, instruments that have all helped Brad become a staple in country music since his debut in the late 90s.

Considering the song has raced into the top 30 in just four weeks, “Camouflage” will no doubt join ranks of Brad’s previous humor laced number one songs. I have nothing but love for Paisley, but it’s just a little irritating to see one of country’s most loved ambassadors continuing to not live up to his artistic potential.

Now, please excuse me while I try to get the shouts of “camouflage” out of my head.

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. RowdyRed says:

    Awww, I think those lines about "disappearing" when it pulls out of his garage," etc. are funny/smart, and I don't consider this to be nearly the damaging stereotype of, say, Toby Keith's "Red Solo Cup" (spare us) or anything, anything at all, by Justin Moore. I don't hear any hostile, alcohol-boosted vilification of the city/urban life, or anything celebrating ignorance as a virtue. It's just a funny little song about the "second most patriotic colors" in America. What's the problem?I don't know how many more singles "This Is Country Music" has in it, but if there's one more, let it be "I Do Now." It has all of the seriosity any serious Brad fan could wish for, and I think it's a high point in his heartbroken ballad career. I personally disliked "Remind Me," but I really enjoyed "Old Alabama" and "TICM" and am unsure what the "artistic decline" I keep hearing about is based on. Brad's been funny and serious throughout his career and has never, in my opinion, stooped to the stereotyping swill I described above. If the future of country music is in the hands of the guys whooping up the "all we is is country" (and some of us are pissed at the rest of you), crowd, heaven help the genre. This may not be Brad's finest album, but he's by far more inspired and gifted than those guys.

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  2. I agree with you that Brad is seemingly more superior than some of the genre's newest male vocalists. But when you're considered one of the torch bearers of country music, you should probably focus on representing the genre in a positive way. I'm not saying he hasn't, because he is certainly one of the best ambassadors, but he's being held to a different standard (at least in my opinion).That's why I expect nothing but the best from him, and lately, he hasn't given me that. He should return to the formula he used on his best albums Mud on the Tires and Time Well Wasted which produced his finest singles of his career with "Whiskey Lullaby," "When I Get Where I'm Going," and "Little Moments." It seems like lately he's releasing more 5th Gear-type material (that album infamously gave us "Ticks," "I'm Still A Guy," and "Online").

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