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Hard 2 Love by Lee Brice
Released: Apr 2012
Label: Curb Records
Lee Brice is an affable, well-rounded Nashville upstart who combines Toby Keith-style playful-rapscallion tunes with Bon Iver's ear for pretty sonic detail -- both the wordplay and the slightly arty studio flourishes are sharply tuned on Hard 2 Love. Aw-shucks hit "A Woman Like You" sets the tone; he drunkenly revels on "Parking Lot Party," convincingly mourns on "I Drive Your Truck" and sings the hell out of the strings-laden ballad "That Way Again." By track 11 it's probably redundant to be touting his love for "Beer," but ah, forget it, he's enjoying himself, and so are you.
Rob Harvilla