Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz
ylan Scott could not be accused of pushing the musical envelope. And opener Dylan Marlowe probably wouldn't be either. But that should not be interpreted as inherently negative. Put another way, if you were looking for a fun, good times a plenty, then Scott and Marlowe fit the bill.
Scott has not released a new album in six years, but that's about to end this August with the release of "Livin' My Best Life." Scott leaned into the new music with the title cut kicking off his portion of the evening. It was one of four songs that appeared on an EP that set the stage for the full-length release.
In this era of tried-and-truck appeal to the masses, Scott's latest single, "New Truck," tries. And the problem was that there was a certain been there, done that quality to some of Scott's music. He checked off the drinking box with "Beer Buddies" (although it's more about friendship than it is about drinking).
The Louisiana native has a soulful quality to his voice and a strength that comes through more clearly live than it does on recorded versions.
Scott's his like "Hooked," "Nobody" and the closing song of the night "My Girl" (there was no encore) sound about as good as ever, and the largely female crowd was in accord.
Covers provided a lengthy and enjoyable part of the night especially when Marlowe reappeared back on stage for a song-off against Scott with each playing parts of a song and letting the audience determine who was better for the right to have a shot. They traded off songs with Scott offering a spry, satisfying version of Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's "Fishing in the Dark" only to be met by Marlowe's recitation of Diamond Rio's sturdy "Meet in the Middle."
Scott scored again with Travis Tritt's "Great Day to Be Alive" with Marlowe covering Jason Aldean's "Dirt Road Diary."
On it went – this was not the first time on the tour they played these songs – and it sure felt fresh and fun. And Scott came out with the better voice.
Unfortunately, Scott totally ignored his very fine 2019 Keith Whitley tribute disc, "An Old Memory," which would have upped the diversity of the music significantly.
Scott separately offered his own takes on Brooks & Dunn's "Red Dirt Road" (good, but he doesn't have Ronnie Dunn's vocal chops) and Eagles' "Desperado."
But everything came together with Marlowe still on stage and a roadie, Ricky Rowton, for a great, spirited take on Garth Brooks' "Friends In Low Places." Rowton actually has done some recording himself. So, it's not like he's a random singer. Good voice, and he killed it as did Rowton and Scott.
Marlowe opened with a confident set of well-constructed songs. He didn't necessarily stretch it out either with his brand-new song (it was being released at midnight) "GBT" as in "girls," "beers" and "trucks."
Marlowe, whose brother Kameron is also a country singer, excelled with his most different song, "All About It." Acoustically-based, it played to Marlowe's sensitive side and was well delivered. There was a lot of upside to Marlowe's stint.
Considering that this was a Thursday night where the weekend is (almost) here, Scott and Marlowe set the right tone for the fun quotient.