They say lightning doesn't strike twice, but one of Nashville finest independent artists, Shantell Ogden follows up her acclaimed 2015 album with a record of equally high quality. As an award winning Americana artist Shantell's songs have received airplay on more than 800 country and Americana radio stations internationally, reached top 2 chart positions both in the U.S. and Europe and featured in film and TV.
Her current album mixes pure country with a soft rock flavour by adding more electric guitar and a fuller drum sound; it's not as dramatic as Carrie Underwood or Shania, but perhaps more reminiscent of Mary Chapin Carpenter at her heaviest and at times even a sprinkling of Fleetwood Mac. Shantell has the natural ability to convey deep familiar emotions with ease and softens the sorrow with some cheeky and sassy lyrics that raise a smile. “They say men are Mars and women from Venus, but there's more than a couple of planets between us,” she sings in About Lovin' Me, a humorous behest to a perspective lover. She writes straight from the heart in the customary sorrowful country ballad, Different Sides Of The Mississippi and confronts the dark side in the bold southern style track, Devil Comes Knocking. Love Again reflects on romance with a mature approach to past 'battle scars' and 'mistakes' with trepidation and caution, “a younger me would have jumped right in,” she sings with a bitter-sweet melancholy. The album opener The Truth About Trains may be about more lost love, but it's also a highlight of the album, with a simplistic toe-tapping country melody, led by Shantell's delightful Nashville drawl. The album takes you on a whistle-stop journey through heartache, love, ambition, desire and before you know it's over too soon. Eight tracks just doesn't seem long enough somehow, but if Shantell wanted to leave us begging for more she certainly got her result.
Groupie Rating 4/5