Jimmie Allen has been marked as one of country music's rising stars ever since he dropped his EP last year. Romantic, passionate, inspirational, Jimmie Allen borrows heavily from the country music rulebook for his debut album. With fifteen tracks the album feels a tad too long as if Allen wanted to get all of his cards on the table and wear his heart on his sleeve in one go. That said, there are some real gems hidden in between the filler tracks.
American Heartbreaker throws every American cliché into the ring and should be a hoakey bubble gum country track, yet it proves to be irresistible and instantly uplifting. Make Me Want To continues along a similar line with a lust turning to love song that calls to mind Ed Sheeran's Galway Girl for another chorus that will be stuck in your head for days. Wait For It uses the Dobro to rousing effect to make this motivational track pure pop country. Back of Your Mind sidesteps the country nature of the album and replaces it with a radio-friendly pop riff that's bound to allow Allen to cross genres with ease.
Mercury lane takes its name from the street where Allen grew up, and his roots are something that is clearly important to him. Warriors is a track that's about the two women in his life: his mother and grandmother and an ode to their strength. Hidden away towards the end of the album is the lead single Best Shot, another track that reveals a softer side to Allen. Combining pop overtones and a classic country twang the track sums up the positive, feel-good thread that runs through an album which is propelled by optimism.
Despite songs about family, living the dream and all American girls Allen brings in electronic beats and pop rhythms that put his album firmly in the modern age, bringing the old and the new together.
Groupie rating 3/5