Parmalee For You

CD Review: Parmalee – For You

by Matt Belyea for Country Music News International

Cinematic Pop-Country, (did I just invent that?) This is where Parmalee’s music falls on the ever-changing country music scale.    Big production values, almost felt like CCM when I first started listening, Although layers of sounds and lyrical associations with the country genre, plus blending hip-hop stylistic rhyming conventions redirect it toward the aforementioned style.  Personally, I believe there are two kinds of music, good and bad, and it’s all in the listener’s ear.  With a certified platinum hit for a track on this release, it’s clear that Parmalee has struck the chord with many younger music fans.


Parmalee is based around the brothers Matt and Scot Thomas.  Playing drums and guitar, they have been performing and their first release was 2002, so going on 20 years of touring and performing, with the likes of Nikki Stix (of Motley Crue) lending production assistance to former recordings and the overall sensibly of Parmalee’s sound.


Some may lament that “This isn’t Country Music!”, well, country music is evolving, and the influences drawn upon and reflect what performers have grown up on and incorporated into their music.  Everyone’s shot of moonshine? Most likely not, but they keep moving forward with this release and a direction the Pop-Country music genre.


Only You – Great vocals, guitar builds – the chorus is big and great, but the verses fall short.


Just The Way  The Thomas brothers harmonies really shine on this tune, a bit heavy handed on the auto-tune, but these boys can sing and harmonize.


Backroad Girl  Nice easing into the song, jumps into the chorus mid-tempo laid back beat – again the repeated echo is their thing and IMHO takes away from the song.


Take My Hand  Okay, now I am into the fourth song and these guys have a formula that works for them. They throw some country rap into the verses, and this song has a bit of Jo Bro’s to the sound(but not in a bad way.)


I Do  Same standard mid-tempo, LOTS of DAW instruments and a bit more pop than country.


Miss You Now  Some nice pedal steel – nice transition in into the chorus, not much else to say about this one.


Greatest Hits remix, gotcha – hang into hip-hop beats- kind of like this song, great chorus.


Better with you  Throw in the entire rhyming dictionary into this tune, but gets saved with a Segway into the chorus


Forget You Drenched in reverb with lots of auto-tune used as an effect ( which you will find on the entire release). Sure, they are great live, big anthem song here.


Alone Like That  Nice catchy song, big production, layers and layers of sound.  This is one of the songs that made me think – “Cinematic Pop Country!”.  Overall, I like this song.


Take the Chevy  Hip’Hopped Country. Starts with a repeat of the chorus theme, and the song

is the juxtaposition of the girl and guy theme.  It works and the song has an overall fun theme to it.


For You – Might be one of my favorite tracks on the release.  Less production and pretty love song.


Overall, this is a listenable release for those who have a taste for modern pop country that features a bit of hip-hop stylings throw into the songwriting.  Parmalee has worked their style for over two decades and reaped the benefits with Platinum status on singles and will keep their streak going with this latest effort.

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