Tag Archives: Play On

Album Review: “Play On” by Carrie Underwood

A little over 4 years after winning American Idol, Carrie Underwood is still churning out the hits and proving to everyone that she is one of the biggest superstars in the music industry.  Her third studio album, Play On, is in stores now, so here’s a track-by-track review of her latest effort:

  1. “Cowboy Casanova”- The first single from shows that Carrie’s got that star power.  It’s a great vocal, of course, but more importantly it shows signs of growth in Carrie’s writing and shows that she’s not going to keep doing the same old thing.  With Hot AC and Pop showing great interest, I see this as being the next “Before He Cheats” in terms of  crossover success.  9.5/10
  2. “Quitter”- Once again, Carrie pulls out something new and different with this song.  This is another song that I see being really successful on country radio, as well as Hot AC and Pop.  It’s insanely catchy, and it would be a great single for next summer.   9/10
  3. “Mama’s Song”- This song will mean a lot to mother’s and their daughters I’m sure, but it’s probably my least favorite on the CD.  It’s not bad, but it’s kind of boring.  I know it means a lot to Carrie though.  8/10
  4. “Change”- Some have called “Change” preachy, I call it epic.  Sure it’s about helping others, but what’s wrong with that?  Not to mention the vocals and musical arrangement are phenomenal. I can’t wait to see Carrie knock this out of the park on the CNN Heroes special. 9/10
  5. “Undo It”- This one screams cross-over, even more than “Cowboy Casanova.” It’s also phenomenal live, as evidenced by the Jimmy Kimmel performance. If they choose to release this as a single, it’ll be a smash on multiple formats. 9.5/10
  6. “Someday When I Stop Loving You”- Once again, Carrie changes things up with “Someday When I Stop Loving You.”  The whole song is pretty low-key, but the vocals and arrangement are beautiful.  Probably Carrie’s most restrained vocal yet, not to mention it’s one of the most true country songs she’s done. 10/10
  7. “Songs Like This”- This song, more than any, just really makes you want to dance.  Every time my iPod shuffles to this song, I want to jump and embarrass myself.  The only problem is that it’s a bit too short, but the aggressive vocals make up for it. 9/10
  8. “Temporary Home”- If this song doesn’t show just how much Carrie has grown as a writer, I don’t know what well.  This deep ballad showcases Carrie’s vocals, but the real magic is the writing.  As I said in my single review of “Temporary Home”, the lyrics don’t beat around the bush and instead deliver the message without complicated metaphors.  “This is our temporary home/It’s not where we belong” sums up quite nicely.  Songwriting awards, engage.  10/10
  9. “This Time”- This smooth country/pop number could be a surprise single pick around the end of Play On’s run, with it’s catchy and light lyrics and delivery.  It’s definitely not like anything Carrie’s released as a single before, so it would keep with the theme of changing things up.  The only problem this song may face is the placement on the CD, where it could be lost among the highlights of the album. 8.5/10
  10. “Look At Me”- Like “I Told You So” before it, “Look At Me” features a soaring vocal by Carrie on a cover of a classic country song.  “Look At Me” is stronger than its predecessor, though, with Vince Gill on harmonies and Carrie bringing her A-game.  It’s the perfect song to keep those who want Carrie to be strictly country busy. 8.5/10
  11. “Unapologize”- To many listeners, “Unapologize” may seem like an off the wall song when you look at the grand scheme of Play On.  I, however, think it only adds to the amazing dynamic of the CD.  Sure “Unapologize” is about as country as “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon, but who says you can’t have a little variation on a CD?  Certainly not me, and that’s what makes Play On so great.  “Unapologize” is pop/rock straight-up and shows off some great vocals by Carrie and a brooding musical arrangement.  It’s got a great chorus, and could see success on Hot AC and pop radio.  9/10
  12. “What Can I Say”- Another beautiful song with a really cool intro.  Sons of Sylvia are on hand for a duet, though Carrie far outshines their lead singer.  That aside, the duet still works marvelously.  I hope this is a single, but I’m not holding my breath.  I can’t wait to see this on the Christmas special coming up. 9.5/10
  13. “Play On”- The title track takes us back to Carrie’s music when she was fresh off of Idol.  It’s a great little throwback, and I like the encouraging message.  Carrie sings the heck out of the final verses, showing us she has been hard at work perfecting that beautiful voice. 8.5/10

Play On has a little something for everyone, and that’s what makes it an amazingly engineered album.  It’s definitely Carrie’s best album from her young career, and arguably one of the best albums of 2009.  As someone who was a little disappointed in Carnival Ride (The first 4 singles were all wonderful, but outside of those and 2 or 3 more I wasn’t that impressed with it), Play On is refreshing indicator of where Carrie is going as an artist and just how much she has grown through the years.  I can’t wait to watch her and her career continue to grow into something truly incredible.

Overall Score: 95 out of 100

Staff Hot Picks: “Cowboy Casanova”, “Quitter”, “Change”, “Undo It”, “Someday When I Stop Loving You”, “Songs Like This”, “Temporary Home”, “Unapologize”, “What Can I Say”

What do you think of Play On?  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Also, Deluxe Membership is now available, click here to join for free.

Thanks for reading!

Rick

Also, be sure and use the new rating feature, found at the bottom of comments and posts!

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Carrie Underwood

Play On by Carrie Underwood Giveaway Winners: Congratulations!

Thanks to all those who participated in the Play On giveaway!  Here are the winners:

  1. Jonathan M.
  2. Susannah H.
  3. Rosalyn R.
  4. Lucy T.
  5. Mike P.
  6. Cindy R.
  7. Tara W.
  8. Melinda S.
  9. Arik M.
  10. Andrea D.

Congratulations again, and I hope you enjoy your new CD!  The winners have all been contacted, so if you see your name on this listing, unless you have already confirmed your prize with me through e-mail, it is just a coincidence, or someone has stolen your identity.

Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Also, Deluxe Membership is now available, click here to join for free.

Thanks for reading!

Rick

Also, be sure and use the new rating feature, found at the bottom of comments and posts!

Leave a comment

Filed under Music

New Contest: Win a Free Copy of “Play On” by Carrie Underwood!

My love and support for Carrie Underwood have been quite evident over the past year that I have been blogging.  She was one of the first to be inducted The Conservative Journal Hall of Fame and her songs have been featured many times as the song of the day.  To celebrate my “re”-arrival onto the blogging scene and the release of Carrie’s third album, I will be giving 10 lucky readers a free copy of the CD!  As I stated in my “welcome back me” post, I’ve been extremely busy and unfortunately it’s caused me to be absent from The Conservative Journal for the past month.  To thank those of you that have continued to follow the site even in my absence, I’ll be doing more of these themed giveaways in the future.  Here are the details:

  • For the first time at The Conservative Journal, this contest is open to EVERYONE.  However, Conservative Journal Deluxe Members will be automatically entered and will receive double entries into the drawing for any additional entry method they use.  The full details of how points will work is listed below.  If you aren’t currently a member and would like to join, click here to read the details and become a member now!  It’s free and extremely easy to do.
  • To enter for your chance to win you can do any of the following:
    1. The easiest way to enter is to become a Conservative Journal Deluxe Member.  That grants you automatic entry and not to mention 2 points for each additional entry method rather than 1.
    2. Commenting on any article at The Conservative Journal or sending an e-mail response or submission grants you 1 entry into the drawing.  Anyone may do this, but make sure to use your real e-mail address when commenting or e-mailing so I can contact you in the event that you win.
    3. Tweet about the release of “Play On”.  Let your friends and followers know about Carrie and you will receive 1 entry.  Make sure to put “@TCJournalUpdate” somewhere in your post so I can easily find your entry.
    4. Write a blog post about Carrie Underwood or “Play On” and you will receive 1 entry into the contest.  Make your either put a link to the contest in the blog post or notify me you made the post so I can easily find it.
  • Non-members can earn up to 3 entries using any of the above methods.  Those who are members and receive the daily newsletter (you get it when you c0nfirm your membership e-mail) may receive up to 6 entries using any combination of the above methods.  Remember, members automatically earn 1 entry for being members and will receive 2 entries for each additional entry method.
  • Winners may take their pick of receiving either a digital copy or a hard copy shipped to you directly from Amazon.
  • As far as technicalities, each entry is assigned a number in the database of members for all giveaways.  I will use random.org to generate a random number until 10 unique e-mails of those who participated are chosen.  Those users will be crowned the winners of this giveaway and will be notified through e-mail.  The winners will also be announced on the site one hour after the contest has expired.  As winners confirm the congratulations e-mail, I will mark their names off the list.  If the winners don’t respond to the “congratulations” e-mail and provide shipping addresses (if needed) in 48 hours, I will generate another number and will notify the new winners.  If the new winners don’t claim his/her prize in 48 hours, I will keep the prize and use it in the next giveaway.

Highlights

Contest: Help promote the release of “Play On” by Carrie Underwood by tweeting or blogging about the CD, or by participating in discussion at The Conservative Journal.
Time Frame: 10/30- 11 PM CST 11/3.  Winners will be posted at Midnight.
Open to: Everyone
Prize: “Play On” by Carrie Underwood

Gook luck and thank you to all who participate!

If you have any questions, please ask!  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Also, Deluxe Membership is now available, click here to join for free and you could win a brand new netbook!

Thanks for reading!

Rick

Also, be sure and use the new rating feature, found at the bottom of comments and posts!

2 Comments

Filed under Thrilling Thursdays