“One Man Band” – Old Dominion
Old Dominion’s second single from its upcoming album follows the wildly successful “Make It Sweet,” which was released last fall. The song was upbeat and poppy, in line with the group’s previous releases. “One Man Band,” on the other hand, is slow and calm in nature as lead singer Matthew Ramsey sings of his bad luck with finding love. The relaxed beat is reminiscent of the group’s 2017 hit “Written in the Sand”—in both tracks, Ramsey’s voice has a smooth, sliding quality that allows the listener to give the detailed lyrics their full attention.
The song also evokes imagery from another previous release: Ramsey’s simple chorus is quick to propose “We’ll get tattoos / And we’ll trash hotel rooms,” similar to what’s described in the band’s 2018 release “Hotel Key.”
The lyrics in “One Man Band” are less witty and unique than most in Old Dominion’s prior releases, but they possess a simple and easygoing nature that make them great anyway. At first, the listener expects a sad song. The opening lines dwell on love gone wrong and loneliness, but once the chorus hits, it’s clear that those trials and tribulations are far in the past for Ramsey. The song takes a sweet turn when he compares his newfound love and desire to make it work with being on the road with his band. Lyrics like “I’ll lay down the beat, you’ll carry the tune” sound similar to Blake Shelton’s “Honey Bee” and “I’ll Name the Dogs,” which use the same contrasting pattern within each line. While Shelton might have faced criticism for overusing that technique, it feels like a perfect touch in “One Man Band.”
“7 rings” – Ariana Grande
At this point, anything with Ariana Grande’s name on it is a surefire hit. “7 rings,” her follow up to the majorly-successful “thank u, next,” allows Grande’s arrogantly pretentious side to shine. It starts off to the beat of “Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music, but quickly evolves into a staccato rap listing off Grande’s material superiority. The catchy and heavily repeated line “I see it, I like it, I want it, I got it” is so annoying in context, but gets stuck in the listener’s head immediately. The song’s production as a whole isn’t refined, but the lyrics are extremely laughable, making the song a fun listen.
“GIRL” by Maren Morris
Maren Morris’ latest single, “GIRL,” is the perfect example of country music’s feminist rise. In the warmly reassuring song, Morris sings about the dangers of comparing yourself to others. The slow and steady beat collides with words of encouragement in simple couplets, such as “Girl, don’t hang your head low / Don’t lose your halo.” The song is unapologetically repetitive, with the line “Everything’s going to be okay, baby” appearing six times—but that just further drives her point home.
Featured Image by RCA Records Nashville