Memory Lane

Memory Lane

For their fifth full-length album, Old Dominion continue to refine their craftsmanlike approach to radio-friendly country music. The title is a bit misleading: There’s certainly some looking back happening, but this isn’t some nostalgic treatise about how things used to be better. Instead, it’s a glimpse at the way relationships blossom, then get complicated before they require maintenance or else fall apart completely. Singer Matthew Ramsey reflects on big-time missed opportunities in “I Should Have Married You,” having “plenty of room for me and my pride” now that he can sleep on “Both Sides of the Bed,” and some flirty new beginnings in “Different About You,” delivering his parts with a sly, winking confidence that’s ideally suited to the band’s breezy arrangements. There’s plenty of grown-up struggle here, too. In “Hot Again,” Ramsey searches for ways to bridge the growing distance between himself and someone else, while in “Easier Said with Rum,” a slightly buzzed phone call leads to a long-overdue apology. “Tennessee Orange” singer Megan Moroney lends her voice to the excellent “Can’t Break Up Now,” in which two people take stock of their romantic investment. “Am I supposed to unlisten to every song written/Take you out of every melody?” they ask one another, hoping the answer is a resounding “no.” Along with “Ain’t Got a Worry,” it’s Old Dominion on their A game: hyper-melodic, clever songwriting that goes down easy and holds up to repeat listens.

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