Songwriter: Troy Jones
I am feeling extremely divided about Randy Travis’s current single from his Anniversary Celebration album (which includes two version, one solo, and one a duet with Brad Paisley). It’s catchy, to be sure, but it certainly doesn’t hold up well in comparison with his classic work from the eighties and nineties. But it is catchy.
On one hand, it’s good to hear an established artist step outside his comfort zone, and if this isn’t outside the familiar Randy Travis zone, then I don’t know what is. Though his voice has noticeably deteriorated over the past few years, he still turns in a solid performance here, and manages to keep up with the song’s fast-paced melody, which by the way is pretty catchy.
But at the same time, there’s really no way around the fact that this is the most uninspired set of lyrics he’s tackled in years. The lyric consists primarily of a heap of feel-good clichés that sound like a mid-life crisis with a splash of Chicken Soup for the Soul. He’s going to kick back and be “a man without a mission,” he’s going to take his time and “dance and dance and dance…” You know… all that good happy stuff. It also taps into a religious vein with a brief sampling of “How Great Thou Art” – a feature that feels a bit superfluous and underdeveloped. But, yeah… it is kinda catchy.
The song works if you’re in the mood for a toe-tapping rhythm, and not up for too much brain function. But if you were hoping for a song that’s anywhere near as meaty as Travis’s best work in his Hall of Fame-worthy career, “Everything and All” will likely leave you unsatisfied.
But… it’s catchy.