Chris Janson - All In
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All In (Warner Nashville, 2022)

Chris Janson

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

Chris Janson, who has made it well known how he's skilled at fixing drinks, expectedly comes to party much of the time on "All In." For instance, he revs up the party bus to top speed during "Halfway to Crazy." However, this 16-song album contains far more than mere bar beverage discussion. Janson has plenty on his mind, and it's all included herein.

The most unusual song is "You, Me & The River," which also features its writer, Eric Church, singing along with Janson. It's a murder ballad, created especially for true crime TV lovers. Church also wrote "Flag On The Wall" with Janson. It's a politically conservative anthem and a little too jingoistic for a Church album. Church is usually much more subtle. Red states oughta love it, though. Just don't expect to hear many New Yorkers or Los Angelenos singing along.

"Bye Mom" is the lone tearjerker. It's a great one, though. The song is an ode to mom, which begins with a boy saying goodbye to his mother before leaving for school and ends with him saying so long at her funeral. It's so heartfelt.

Travis Tritt sings along on "Things You Can't Live Without." It's a revved-up country song with plenty of cranked up guitar and pounded piano. Tritt fits it well, as this sort of a rave-up is right in his stylistic wheelhouse.

The title track, an unabashed love song, is an anthem about immediate and committed affection. It's also the only song of its type on the album, which makes it stand out and work well.

Yes, Chris Janson is the right guy to fix your drink right. However, this album proves he's also able to create sincere, memorable bar talk, too.

CDs by Chris Janson

All In, 2022 Real Friends, 2019 Everybody, 2017 Fix a Drink EP, 2017 Buy Me A Boat, 2015

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