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American Young (Jon Stone and Kristy Osmunson) bring the heart and soul back into modern country. There is no big band theatrics here, no fancy showboating just honest, pure country music. The duo Jon and Kristy already had some success writing for other artists, but for their own material the focus has shifted back to the essence of the genre.

American young bring the music back full circle to simple melodies and captivating lyrics, as a duo, they just don't sound like anybody else. They have a natural and poetic way of wording the ordinary and mundane, gracefully placing a mirror up to life like all the great country songwriters.

Jon and Kristy's voices are so harmonious together even though they would say they are opposites, but it works like yin and yang. Take the album opener Be Here where Jon's lead vocal is tender and Kristy's longing harmonies are deeply beautiful. The music is easy to relate to in tracks like American Dream, fun - take a listen to the quirky track My Pint Of View, it could easily have been the kind of song that Dolly and Porter would have done; honest and at times brutal with God Sends A Train. Other tracks like Soldier's Wife (Don't Want You To Go) tells it like it is without any flourishes or sugar coating. Hometown Girl sees Kristy giving another strong vocal performance. It's as warm and familiar as apple pie but is desperately heartbreaking at the same time. Co-producer Lee Brice also guests on a track called Eighteen and Party In The Dark is a sexy yet romantic love song.

It's hard to find fault here if there is one, it's that some of the tracks end too abruptly - but that some serious barrel scraping. Their album is an inspiring country music record which has one foot in the genre's roots and the other firmly moving it forward with no frills, no glitz, just great music.

Groupie Rating 4/5

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