Dustin Lynch’s appearance might lead you to believe that he’s an old-school, country-and-western artist with his cowboy hat and Marlboro man good looks—much like a junior Chris LeDoux. And his hit single, “Cowboys and Angels,” would serve to reinforce that. But give his self-titled debut album a listen and you’ll find there are many layers to this up-and-coming star and a song for each one.
There’s a full-on barnburner in the opening track, “She Cranks My Tractor,” full of dirt road visuals and a thumping downbeat. There’s the blast-from the-past, memory-evoking “Last Lap”—after all, who didn’t get a Route 44 from Sonic and pour out half to make room for hooch? Then there’s the incredibly smooth and sexy “Rock You Sweet” and the toe-tapping (or booty-shaking) “Dancing in the Headlights.”
All showcase Dustin’s honeyed voice, which is both diverse and consistent, sometimes cool and crisp, and other times warm and soothing. He really shines on the songs that he had a hand in writing, which are 10 of the 13, but don’t skip over the others, especially “Wild in Your Smile,” which is a bit more edgy and electrified than one might expect from someone in pearl snaps.
Dustin wraps the album with the bonus track “Your Plan”—the only song he wrote on his own. It is a simply produced track with a haunting message of both gratitude and surrender that anyone who has faced any kind of challenge in life could understand. Good ride, cowboy. Good ride.