963 - Deana Carter 'Did I Shave My Legs For This?' (1996)

My Rating: 2.27 out of 5
1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die: X
Rolling Stone 500 Greatest Albums: X
The Mojo Collection: X

Chart Peak (UK/US): --/10

Favourite Tracks: If This Is Love, Strawberry Wine, Did I Shave My Legs For This?
Least-Favourite Track: How Do I Get There

When I was a young kid my dad would sometimes take me out of school for day trips. He had a big American Chevrolet with an 8-track tape player (remember them?) though only a handful of tapes. That didn't matter because the only one that ever really got played was Glen Campbell. To this day whenever I hear Wichita Lineman it makes me think of those stolen moments; long sunny days bunking off school & cruising through the countryside with my dad.

So while most people I know detest country music, I've always had a bit of a soft spot for it & was quite looking forward to hearing this record. I didn't know anything about Deana Carter but I thought the album title was intriguing & suggested I was in for some sophisticated bittersweet songs. But I must admit to being a little disappointed.

For starters, the lyrical content is a good deal more lightweight than the title suggests; it's not full of empty pop sentiments by any means, but neither is it achingly poignant. More Shania than Dolly in that respect. Musically it's similarly inoffensive. That sounds so trite but to my ears it's a bog-standard, contemporary country-pop record; not one of the songs was bad, but neither were any of them particularly special. No guitar solos jumped out, no fiddles tore at your heart, no chords dared to tinker with the formula (apart from the middle 8 on Strawberry Wine - why couldn't we have a few more surprises like that?).

So is this one of the top 1000 albums of all-time? No. It may well be one of the top-selling albums of all-time, but that's an entirely different thing. Pleasant as it is, I can't imagine we'll still be talking about it in 20 year's time.


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