Pat Green was one of the biggest stars in Texas when he took his talents to Nashville to take on the world of country radio. While he experienced success, he lost a large chunk of his original fanbase, who accused him of “selling out”. Whether or not Pat was truly a sellout is neither here nor there, but let’s just say both his biggest fans who claim he never changed and his biggest detractors who criticized his frosted tips and mellowed out sound had a legitimate point. After a long hiatus, Pat is back with new album, appropriately titled Home. With the bright lights of Nashville far behind him, Pat gets back to his roots with this new set of tunes.
The first song on the album tells you exactly what to expect. “Home” discusses how Pat felt he could take on the world, but sang the wrong songs and made mistakes. Now he is glad to be back “home”. The song is more twangy and traditional leaning than most of his Nashville output as well. The second song, “Bring It Back Down” has a great fiddle arrangement and catchy melody. Once again, the title is reminiscent of what to expect on the album. The whole thing is “brought down”. He features a lot of stripped down songs that have more of a traditional feel. The lead single “While I Was Away” is a great ode to fatherhood written by fellow Texan Zane Williams. Anyone with children should really relate to this song. It is one of the strongest songs that Pat has ever recorded, and the highlight of the album. “No One Here” is a great tender love ballad. “I Go Back To You” is another ballad, this one about reminiscing on a love past, but with a little more of a pop appeal. Big guitars and a driving beat make this a song that would have fit in on Pat’s more mainstream albums, but doesn’t feel out of place here either. “Day One” is a great heartbreak song that feels very honest and raw. There are a few great guest spots on the album. Lyle Lovett makes an appearance on “Girls From Texas”, a song that may sound cliché from the title, but is a pretty enjoyable song thanks to some clever quips and appealing melody. Pat closes the album with Marc Brussard on “Goodnight In New Orleans", a fun Cajun jam. Sheryl Crow helps out on the easy going “Right Now”. Sheryl is the go-to voice from outside the genre to bring a song home, and she doesn’t disappoint in this case. While her solo country album may have reeked of being opportunistic, her guest spots are always fantastic.
Another guest spot is on the upbeat “May The Good Times Never End” with Delbert McClinton and Lee Roy Parnell. The song doesn’t really work for me. The whole thing feels a little wonky and never gets my blood pumping like its supposed to. I wouldn’t call it a bad song, but its among the weaker songs on the album. Now, if you are looking for a bad song, check out “Bet Yo Mama”. It has a funky beat that is supposed to have a bluesy feel, but it just falls flat to me. The lyrics are cheesy and the melody just trudges along. I’m not a fan. What Pat Green does best is mid-tempo feel good songs with catchy melodies, and there are a few good ones here. The aforementioned “Bring It Back Down” is a perfect example. “I’ll Take This House” sounds like it could be a radio hit if country radio had any standards, and “Life As Good As It Can Be” feels that way as well. All three find Pat right in his wheelhouse making the music that he does best.
Pat Green is finally back where he belongs. The guy has too much talent to be regulated to just Texas, but too much of a country sound to make it on radio. Home is a great mesh of both worlds. Pat is back where he belongs, but hasn’t forgot where he’s been. The Texas sound is back, but the Nashville sound isn’t gone. He has blended the two eras to make a great album. If you are a fan of either era of Pat Green’s career, Home has something for you. Most importantly, it finds Pat right where he wants to be. The happiness he feels leads to great music. Welcome back, Pat Green!
Standout Tracks: “While I Was Away”, “Bring It Back Down”, “I’ll Take This House”, “Home”, “Day One”, “No One Here But Us”
"While I Was Away"