Back in 2017, Thomas Rhett released Life Changes. This is his third studio album and hands down his best yet. He brings his own flair to the album while also utilizing features from his father and Maren Morris, both of which work really well. The project has its country songs for all the cowboys out there but also mixes in some neat additions of more pop and even an EDM track. Rhett brings variety onto the country scene, something we don’t see often.
This part of the album is perfectly done. Thomas Rhett has a wonderfully beautiful voice that works so well in the country genre. “Craving You” and “Unforgettable” show off the Nashville singers soothing tone as he sings about love and longing over more country pop beats. Meanwhile, on tracks like “Drink A Beer” he almost has this different sound. One that is lower with big switches to higher notes. As I mentioned in the intro, he also collaborated with Maren Morris and his father, Rhett Atkins. Both features add to the vocal aspect of the project, with Morris and Atkins’s voices pairing really well with Rhett’s. He also is a great lyricist and is fantastic at telling stories in his songs. The title track “Life Changes” tells the best story of the entire album.
I am using that header for a reason. While a majority of the album is country instrumentals, we also saw the use of some very different beats. Rhett brought a lot to the table and I felt this overloaded the listener. At times you had banjos and guitars like a country song then into songs with quick tempo high hats and beat drops. Nothing was terrible, it just didn’t fit right together.
The flow wasn’t great. That was established due to the use of different kinds of beats in the wrong spots. However, Rhett’s goal was to bring in different sounds to a country album.
“I want people to come in from different genres and be like, ‘Dang, I never really listened to country music, but this record kind of turns me on in different ways’. I think that’s why I recorded so many different types of songs on this record and really just tried to write what I know about.” – Rhett on USA Today
For the sole fact that it was his goal the whole time, then you have to give him some credit. He really mixed it up. “Sweetheart” has this swingy 50s feel while “Smooth Like A Summer” is a modern cross between EDM, country, and pop.
“Craving You”, “Unforgettable”, “Life Changes”, and “Kiss Me Like A Stranger”.
Thomas Rhett has a great voice and that carries this album. Is it the best country album? No, mainly because it brings in so many other twists on genres that it’s hard to consider it a genre-specific project. However, it is perfect for any summer country playlist. It has fun songs, love songs, and sad songs. Life Changes is a:
Now go drink a beer, kiss a girl, and ride off into the sunset.