You know, I honestly feel as if I’ve been unfair to Sam Hunt over the past couple years. When he first emerged onto the scene in 2014, I was joining the consensus who were bashing him for not being country at all and not belonging in country music whatsoever.
Now, if you are one of those people who doesn’t like Sam solely because of his lack of country merits, that’s totally fine. After all, it’s not as if he has many country merits to begin with. What I’m trying to get at though is that I never tried to see Sam Hunt plainly as an artist or chose to actually unpack his songs for what they are. But hey, it’s the turning of a new year, and it’s time to make some changes in my life. With that being said, when I heard that Sam had released a brand new song on New Year’s titled “Drinkin’ Too Much”, I figured it would give me the chance to talk about Sam as an artist. So how did this turn out?
Now, I’ve been unfair to Sam over the past years, yes, however I’m still not sold on the guy as an artist, and the reason why always points back to his lyrics most of the time, more specifically his lyrical personality. From the outright confession of cheating in “Single For The Summer” to the constant complaining in “Break Up In A Small Town”, there are times where Sam can come across as not the most likable person out there.
Really, that extends somewhat to this song as well. With this song however, it’s more just a sense of creepiness than anything else that permeates this song. To be fair, I get the intention of this song – apologize to this girl for making her life hell after you went and became a big star, it’s honestly a great foundation and I can appreciate Sam’s honest throughout the song as well as him laying it all on the line.
However, there are moments where it gets a little TOO confessional, such as the line about her lying in her bathtub for hours and putting her face under the water and crying – how the hell would you know what someone does in their bathtub every night besides you know, bathe? There’s also the shift in tone throughout. From a lyrical standpoint, I was on board with this song for awhile. He’s apologizing to her for naming his album after her hometown as well as apologizing for the constant pesterting she recieves from strangers on social media. The chorus reflects how it’s made him feel and how empty it’s made him, again, good foundation here.
However, by the end of the song it’s clear that his motives are for his own self-interest. Unlike say, Jake Owen’s “LAX” where the narrator only wishes for his ex-lover to be happy (meaning they’ve both moved on), Sam just keeps talking about how he knows they can’t possibly be through and how he won’t stop until they’re together again. It’s that assumption towards the end that she’s still into him that reminds me of Sam’s arrogance that can come across in his lyrics at times.
There’s also the fact that this song is really TOO personal for anyone to relate to. I remember reading once on a country music messaging board that someone liked but didn’t love Chris Janson’s “Holdin’ Her” because it was too personal. Really, that’s how I feel with this.
There’s also the production here which is just oddly stiff, nothing that’s new for Sam Hunt of course but still, there is essentially nothing going on with this song in this area, and the fact that he continously talks (not sings) throughout the entire song just leaves me feeling that this song is just a big pile of “meh”.
Hey, maybe I have no right talking about this song. After all, it’s Sam’s story, not mine. However, from the looks of things, it appears that Sam’s production choices are clearly not going to win over any new fans if this new song is indicative at all for the rest of his music. Moreover, it would also appear as if Sam isn’t winning me over as a lyricist anytime either. I don’t hate this song like so many others are bound to do, but it’s not something I exactly care for either.