Jason Aldean: ‘MACON’ – Album Review
Jason Aldean’s highly-anticipated album, MACON is officially here. The first fifteen tracks of his double album is out now.
Aldean will go down as one of the most successful country artists ever. He has accumulated 26 number one hits, 15 billion streams, and more than 20 million albums sold over his 16-year career. In 2019, the Academy of Country Music awarded him the Dick Clark Artist of the Decade. Aldean’s hometown of Macon, Georgia means a lot to him, which motivated him to name his tenth studio album after it.
“Where you were raised has such a big influence on who you become and for me it’s no different…especially from a music standpoint,” Aldean said in a recent press release. “My little hometown of Macon was heavily instrumental in my musical background. Growing up in an environment that was a crossroads between country music, southern rock, blues and R&B, it was just natural to blend different sounds in my own way.”
Kurt Allison, Tully Kennedy, John Morgan, and Lydia Vaughan were the four main writers on this project, having cuts on four of the nine new songs. Allison and Kennedy are also in Aldean’s touring band and play their instruments on the record as well. Heartbreak and healing share the overarching theme on MACON. In “Over You Again,” the singer finds himself in an endless cycle of falling in and out of love with his ex. When he finally starts to think he’s over her, he shortly backslides and needs to go through the process again. This is the most poppy-track on the record and features backing vocals from an uncredited female. In “This Bar Don’t Work Anymore,” the singer leans on the neon lights to mend his broken heart, but the one he is trying to get over is on the dance floor with another guy.
“They might as well close it down, shut it down, go ‘head and board up the windows and lock the door // “cause this bar don’t work anymore”
John Edwards adds his input to the third track on the album, “That’s What Tequila Does.” Aldean sings about the confidence tequila gives drinkers when trying to get back with an ex. You might think it’s working at first, but it will just leave you disappointed at the end of the day. The quartet also penned the multi-week number one single “If I Didn’t Love You” with Carrie Underwood as well. The two performed the song together for the first time at the CMA Awards earlier this month. Watch here:
The writers of “After You” (Micah Wilshire, Michael Tyler, Thomas Archer) use clever wordplay to portray this former relationship. It started with the man chasing after her and following her every move to trying to figure out what life was “after love, after leaving, after too much drinking, after you.”
The bar is the setting in most of the tracks on this album, and “Story For Another Glass” is no different. Upon taking his seat, he tells the people around him he has no interest in talking about his ex right now. However, that might change a few drinks from now.
“Just wanna pour beer on an ol’ heartbreak // Drink ’em outta José and shoot ’em outta limes // Maybe kiss a stranger in the neon light // Buddy, I know that you’re tryna help // Just don’t remind me I’m goin’ through hell // If I get enough in me, man, I might just crack // But right now, she’s a story for another glass”
Aldean took songs from other major-label recording artists in Brantley Gilbert, Michael Ray and Morgan Wallen. Brantley and Ray co-wrote “Small Town Small” with Taylor and Josh Phillips, Chase McGill, Brock Berryhill, Brian Davis, and Brandon Day. “Small Town Small” is an ode to small town life and the people who rule it. It is the only fun, party song on the album, which is very unlike Aldean.
Fans who are aware of Wallen’s recent history can metaphorically hear him in the “The Sad Songs.” Everything is going great in this new relationship, but the man fears that once she hears about some of his poor past behaviors, she will leave right then and there. Wallen wrote this with Josh Thompson and Brandon Kinney.
Aldean released his Bryan Adams cover of “Heaven” exclusively on Amazon Music in May but is now available everywhere and included on MACON. Although the two singers have very different vocal ranges, Aldean does a great job of creating a new sound and giving the song a new meaning. The first half of the project ends with five live tracks from different shows including “Amarillo Sky,” “Johnny Cash,” “She’s Country,” “Big Green Tractor,” and “My Kinda Party.” Between Macon and Georgia, one song from all nine of Aldean’s previous albums will be represented in live tracks. Click here for the Georgia tracklist which will come out on April 22nd.
MACON Track List
- After You
- Over You Again
- That’s What Tequila Does
- Small Town Small
- If I Didn’t Love You with Carrie Underwood
- Story For Another Glass
- This Bar Don’t Work Anymore
- The Sad Songs
- Watching You Love Me
- Amarillo Sky (Live from Nashville, TN)
- Johnny Cash (Live from Los Angeles, CA)
- She’s Country (Live from Las Vegas, NV)
- Big Green Tractor (Live from Dallas, TX)
- My Kinda Party (Live from St. Louis, MO)
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MACON is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released tunes on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.