by John Gaddis
Florida Georgia Line (sometimes abbreviated as FGL) is an American country music duo consisting of vocalists Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley. Their 2012 debut single “Cruise,” remains their most popular song, breaking two major sales records: it was downloaded over seven million times, making it the first country song ever to receive the Diamond certification, and it became the best-selling digital country song of all time, with 24 weeks at number one, until it was surpassed in July 2017 by Sam Hunt’s “Body Like a Back Road.” The success of “Cruise” helped to pioneer a style of country music known as “bro-country,” which incorporates production elements from rock and hip-hop music, and tends to cover subject matter such as partying, drinking, driving trucks and romantic attraction. Much of their subsequent music has been tagged with the “bro-country” label as well. Their discography includes: Here’s to the Good Times (2012); Anything Goes (2014), Dig Your Roots (2016) and their latest album, Can’t Say I Ain’t Country. Which appears to be settling a few questions.
“Can’t Say I Ain’t Country,” is exactly what you would expect from the title. Good old southern values, with colloquialisms flying high. Replete with southern catch phrases and just the right amount of twang to send it home. Hubbard and Kelley remove any doubt the two understand the country life. Laced with tightly woven harmonies the two spin out a hook-oriented tune that proves, you can call the two anything, but you can’t say they ain’t country.
The album has a few fun-filled interlude cuts meant to make you smile, sub-titled “skits.” They offer fun little nuggets of laughter in the 19 cuts of rip-roaring tunes that comprise, Can’t Say I Ain’t Country. The FGL is joined by Jason Aldean on the tune “Can’t Hide Red.” A southern anthem laying out the good life of southern style with no apologies. Once again, the harmonies are spot on, a poignant play on FGL’s pride of their roots firmly cemented with Aldean’s guest appearance. The boys don’t hide their pride or their amour-propre for the southern life.
Can’t Say I Ain’t Country is a collection of tunes that cement the good clean fun of country lyrics and the solid melodies contained on FGL’s new album, the message of the tunes clearly cement the duo as ambassadors for country music with no concessions. Its easy to see why this charming co-collaboration has sold so much music and continue to sell out shows wherever they travel. They know their brand and they are sticking to it, cause you just can’t say they aint country.