Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Toby Keith - She Left Me

Okay, so I came to love Toby Keith as a larger-than-life figure who was unashamedly, but often hilariously patriotic, and basically sent the entire genre of dad-rap packing when "I Wanna Talk About Me" had US radio on lockdown at the end of 2003. A man who didn't so much deliver punchlines as send them running for cover by bellowing them and who didn't differentiate between his good lines and his bad ones, he wanted you to hear ALL of him, and (sometimes) it was good.

And what's he gone and done on us? Why, dear reader, he's mellowed, and it's not an awful lot of fun, mostly. Except for this, which is rather wonderful but disappointingly subdued. Where the old Toby would have roared out his best lines with the maniacal glee of a hack stand-up comic and you couldn't help but smile, but while there still are some ("She'll remember me until the day that she forgets me/We'd still be together.. but she left me"), it's all a bit restrained and judicious.

On the plus side, it means you might not notice a cliched clunker of a line like "I heard she ran off with my best friend Jake, I know I'm gonna miss him", but beyond that, this really could have done with some oomph. Not passion, part of the joke here is that Toby doesn't actually seem too bothered about what befell him, but a straight-faced, straight man joke goes down a bit more effectively if everything around you is a bit crazy - and it's not the fact that something's missing, it's just that what's there should have been cranked up a bit. I'll blame the producer, he was probably too engrossed in dials and buttons without working out how this plays on CMT which everyone knows is more important.


Blogger Anthony said...

right on the money--i was expecting more f rom the first single

5:21 PM  
Blogger countrygrrl said...

toby is the guy who tells it like it is...his greatest hits is a big cookin in the kitchen hit for me and i like his big bear voice too all power to his stetson,,

8:42 AM  

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