CD Review: Tim McGraw

Southern Voice (Curb)

Country superstar McGraw sticks to the basics on his 10th album. That means there are a few goofball toss-offs ("It's a Business Doing Pleasure With You," co-written by Nickelback's Chad Kroeger), some twangy nostalgia ("Ghost Town Train," the title tune) and the usual dose of heart-tugging weepers ("You Had to Be There," "Love You Goodbye"). Aside from a couple of not-down-on-the-farm guitar solos and overstated choruses, Southern Voice doesn't aim for a pop crossover, making it McGraw's most natural-sounding album in years. It's also one of his blandest. Without a big showstopper like "Live Like You Were Dying" or a boundary-jumper like "Red Ragtop," Southern Voice settles into a sort of languid southern comfort that not even McGraw's typically warm voice can rouse. — Michael Gallucci

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