Too Much Is Too Much
Until Garth Brooks, Country music treated albums as filler for singles. Pre- 1980's Country albums had 2 singles at the most then it was on to the next album. In the 80's 3 or 4 singles wasn't out of the question. But still, albums were an afterthought. Brooks changed all that. His albums were thought out and every song was made to last. There were exceptions to pre-Garth. You'll find smatterings of them throughout Country history. But even those exceptions: Willie, Waylon, Merle, Dolly, Gary Stewart, and for sure, George Strait would dump 2 albums a year thanks to filler. Today, most Country acts take a couple of years to drop new stuff. But product is still key in Nashville. With summer touring comes summer product. Which is why Greatest Hits and live albums pad out in-between albums. On his fifth secular title, Fifth Gear, Brad Paisley still treats the album as album. But he's running short on new ideas. This is one of his least intersting albums, but it's still worth it because Paisley's humor ("Ticks" a great single) is more wry then any other Country act. This was supposed to be a Greatest Hits album, but Paisley convinced his label he had an album in him. Just a year since his previous, and best one. Like Toby Keith, Paisley's non-stop studio albums are gonna run dry. On Fifth Gear, he's showing signs. His next album will be a keeper, though. It'll be a Greatest Hits one. He deserves a break.