Thomas Rhett has always played the line of country and pop very thinly. His new album might be more pop than his others, and I love it. Rhett released his fourth studio album May 31, taking us on a 16-song journey of how he found the “Center Point Road” of his life.
Rhett gives us what we think will be a sweet country ballad about finding happiness in his life in “UP,” the first song on the album, only for it to go full-on pop jazz. I think it aptly prepares the listeners for the next 15 tracks.
He quickly reminds us of his Valdosta, Georgia, roots with my personal favorite, “Don’t Threaten Me With A Good Time,” featuring country group Little Big Town. This song would make anyone get up on a bar table and dance it out. It reminds me of something fellow country male artist Sam Hunt would sing. Instead of a “House Party,” Rhett makes you want to go out and dance until the sun comes up with this country rock song.
He does give us the sweet country melody we were expecting in “Look What God Gave Her,” “Blessed” and “Center Point Road.” “Look What God Gave Her” is a dance-worthy tune and “Blessed” is the one that makes you reflect a little more. Both songs are perfect to listen to on repeat at any occasion, and pay homage to Rhett’s wife.
Title track, “Center Point Road,” features Kelsea Ballerini. It reflects on Rhett’s good times where he was able to “write destiny on Friday nights.”
It wouldn’t be considered a country album if our southern singer didn’t pay homage to his favorite pick up truck that got him through the rough years of his life. “That Old Truck” is a coming-of-age story, a sweet goodbye and a thank you to his favorite car. I think this song is probably the most country out of all the other tracks.
Just in time for the long summer drives and parties, he drops the song “VHS,” and it’s not talking about the old school tape either. “VHS” almost gives you what seems to be early 2000s music styles. The chorus is catchy and the song is bound to be popular this summer season.
Rhett ends the 16-track album with the song “Almost” to wrap up the story of his journey. I like this one because it‘s a perfect ending and reminds you that each song was connected to a certain stage of his life.
“Almost” is definitely a true country song, not only sonically but also lyrically — “thank God for the highs, thank God for the lows, and thank God for the almost.” It reminds us that Rhett is grateful for the opportunities given to him and remembers the ones he missed.
“Center Point Road,” was a gift to Thomas Rhett’s fans and gave them insight into his past and how he came to produce such great music.