Saturday, June 25, 2011

Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood, "Remind Me"

Songwriters:  Brad Paisley, Chris DuBois, Kelley Lovelace

Could you possibly squeeze any more star power into one single release?  I doubt it.  The third single from Brad Paisley's current album This Is Country Music is a duet with fellow A-list hitmaker Carrie Underwood.  Without a doubt, the song is a no-brainer hit.  But is the quality on the same high level as its hit potential?  Not quite.

This song is so good.  There's something subtly sexy about one spouse reminiscing about the passion the couple felt in the relationship's earlier stages, with the other responding "Remind me."  The way the performance takes the form of a heart-to-heart conversation between man and woman really brings the story to life.  While the lyrics do include some of the typical Paisley cutesiness with a line about 'making out in a crowd somewhere,' this is overall one of the best songs Brad has written in a long time.

The handling, however, is rough.  The production is over-the-top, and Brad and Carrie both over-sing it to a degree.  This is one song that really doesn't work as a power ballad. Such a heavy-handed treatment detracts from the raw emotion in the song, and distracts from the story it attempts to tell.  The song would have benefited greatly with a simpler approach.

"Remind Me" is still a good song, but the recorded version we're left with is only mildly enjoyable when it could have been something so much greater.  If we're lucky, maybe we'll eventually get to hear a more restrained acoustic version that will allow both the song and the vocalists to shine to their full potential.

(Scores are given on a scale of 1 to 10)