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Thread: Sofa Critic - My "Blown Away" review

  1. #1
    Carrie Follower Sofa Critic's Avatar
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    Sofa Critic - My "Blown Away" review

    Hi All,

    Please give me your feedback. Needless to say, I love this album!



    Where to begin? Let me say it succinctly – Carrie Underwood’s fourth album “Blown Away” is astounding. Rock solid from beginning to end, it is a complete triumph and a huge leap forward for Carrie on all fronts. Vocally, lyrically and creatively, this is the emergence of Carrie Underwood 2.0 - The Artist.

    Contained within its 14 diverse tracks are styles ranging from classic country (“Wine After Whiskey”, “Cupid’s Got a Shotgun”) to calypso (“One Way Ticket”) to progressive country (“Blown Away”, “Two Black Cadillacs) all handled with vocal aplomb by Carrie, whose star has never shone brighter.

    Previous albums “Some Hearts”, “Carnival Ride” and “Play On” are chock full of hits, but some songs seemed a bit too fussed over and formulaic. Many of the lesser cuts had a girlishness about them, with subject matters seemingly pulled from the pages of teen diaries. No more.

    “Blown Away” is the work of a mature young woman. Throughout the album, Carrie is confident, completely in command and firing on all cylinders. Lyrically rich, with expansive production by long-time producer Mark Bright, “Blown Away” has the goods to go the distance, taking down everything in its path on its march to glory at the CMAs, ACMs and Grammys, where it will most definitely represent country music as an Album of the Year nominee. As some have already mentioned, this could indeed be Carrie’s “21”.

    Two tracks in particular stand head and shoulders above the pack: “Two Black Cadillacs” and “Wine After Whiskey”, both co-written by Underwood. The former tells the tale of a wife and mistress conspiring to do away with the man who betrayed them both, while the latter is a classic country weeper about a new relationship that pales in comparison to what came before. Against a cinematic backdrop of tinkling piano, rolling drums and edgy strings, Carrie brings “Cadillac” to life, infusing the chorus with gospel-tinged vocals: “…and the preacher said he was a good man, and his brother said he was a good friend…” Tense, muscular and assured, Carrie's delivery is stellar. This is a shining example of progressive country music. “Wine After Whiskey” is pure heartbreak in the classic country tradition. Carrie effortlessly conveys the emptiness felt by a lover who discovers her new flame can’t possibly compare to the one true love that has left and moved on. Carrie’s vocal is tender and nuanced during the verses – crying out in hurtful longing during the heartbreaking chorus: “Once you’ve tasted a love so strong, you can’t go back and you can’t settle on anything less, and that’s what gets me, it’s like having Wine After Whiskey.” In the pantheon of classic country vocalists – Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn and Tammy Wynette, Carrie stands tall with this moving and heartfelt song.

    “Blown Away” contains other strong cuts like the dramatic title track, where Carrie’s vocal matches the power of the twister at the center of a tale about a daughter’s revenge on a drunken, abusive father. “Cupid’s Got a Shotgun”, a fast-paced redneck rave-up fits Underwood like a glove as she sings of being pursued by a suitor armed with a “sawed-off double-barrel, trigger-happy as can be…” A lively fiddle solo is followed by the twangy guitar runs of guest Brad Paisley. “One Way Ticket” is a breezy, calypso-styled ditty where Carrie substitutes steel drums with intentionally off-key whistling. It’s a hoot, and one of the few moments of levity on the album. In song after song, Underwood’s vocals are warm, natural and unforced. Having listened to Adele last year, she’s learned to reign in her tendency to unleash the glory notes, opting instead for restraint, subtlety and vocal detail, best exemplified in the spare and beautiful “Forever Changed”.

    With the new album release less than a week away, a new chapter in Carrie Underwood’s career is beginning. With international tours planned, the world will finally hear what we’ve always known – Carrie is the finest singer of our generation. Let there be no doubt.
    Last edited by Sofa Critic; 04-26-2012 at 05:43 AM.

  • #2
    Obsessed Carrie Fan cole's Avatar
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    WOW!!! I loved your review -- your writing skills are crazy amazing! Stellar job, sofa!


    *jealous*!!

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    You captured the very essence of blown away. Incredible review! Thank you.

  • #4
    Carrie Guru rainbow1's Avatar
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    Stellar review!!!
    oldyfan and Ann055 like this.

  • #5
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    Fantastic, well-written review! My very-limited literary skills yields only this: Carrie is the finest singer of our generation.
    DaisyTweets likes this.

  • #6
    Obsessed Carrie Fan 12russ79's Avatar
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    Sofa Critic... Welcome... You belong here... Thanks for taking the time... To enlighten us with your incredible review... Carrie is indeed an artist now and I couldn't be more proud of her....

  • #7
    Carrie Guru pklongbeach's Avatar
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    thanks Sofa Critc. I couldn't agree more.
    I love that so many people have different titles as stand outs or favorites.

  • #8
    Ultimate Carrie Fan Farawayhills's Avatar
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    Very nicely put. I particularly like the way you've highlighted the combination of classical and progressive elements in the music (not many artists seem to attempt that in the Mainstream, let alone pull it off - and hopefully it will help take the focus away from the rather tired concern over whether or not something is "traditional")
    DaisyTweets and Gator like this.

  • #9
    Insane Carrie Fan judes's Avatar
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    I always knew the artist Carrie would surface in her music - her fascination with music and singing started as a very young child and just grew within her , she just needed the confidence and maturity in her vocals and songwriting to let it fly and she sure did on this album- I agree with your review - this might be an album to collect for music lovers across genres
    bearball49 and Gator like this.

  • #10
    Insane Carrie Fan liz278's Avatar
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    I love your review of the album! I hope that everyone can see how much Carrie has matured into a completely different artist than she even was 2 years ago. I am so glad that she took this last year to make this album, and I am one who was very impatient with the process, but as her song said, "thank God we didn't get what we deserve"!!!!!!

  • #11
    Ultimate Carrie Fan Ann055's Avatar
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    Thank you so much for your review Sofa Critic!! It is so very well written...love it! Am so glad to see you here!!

  • #12
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    Very nice review. You certainly get Carrie and her latest effort. We fans have been complainig nonstop about how long a break she took. Her album could not come out fast enough to please us. I have read her interviews and all I can say is she needs to take her time between albums to be cretive and not in a forced way. I would rather have a stellar album every few years than a mediocre one every year.

  • #13
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    Your review is stellar! Fantastic! Thank you for sharing.

    My favourite part is:

    With the new album release less than a week away, a new chapter in Carrie Underwood’s career is beginning. With international tours planned, the world will finally hear what we’ve always known – Carrie is the finest singer of our generation. Let there be no doubt.
    DaisyTweets likes this.

  • #14
    Insane Carrie Fan twaintrain's Avatar
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    Thank you. That was a fantastic review!

  • #15
    Carrie Follower Sofa Critic's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for your kind words. I'll drop by from time to time, but I'm mostly on Twitter at Sofa_Critic
    Ann055 likes this.

  • #16
    Carrie Guru allamericangirl8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farawayhills View Post
    Very nicely put. I particularly like the way you've highlighted the combination of classical and progressive elements in the music (not many artists seem to attempt that in the Mainstream, let alone pull it off - and hopefully it will help take the focus away from the rather tired concern over whether or not something is "traditional")
    See, this is why I'm so fussed over Blown Away. This album is the perfect example of progression, and, in my opinion, progression is the soul of artistry. Experimentation, taking established ideas and elevating them into something totally different and original. TBC in particular perfectly illustrates what I'm trying to say. This is her most creative and innovative era yet, no doubt in my mind.


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