By Erika Kuehl | Staff Writer
Providing bluesy roots and undeniable talent, country king Chris Stapleton is back with 14 tracks that wind through tumultuous love and dark addiction in his newest album, “Higher.”
Perfect for nights by the fireplace, “It Takes A Woman” is a song to slow dance to. Stapleton uses a quiet beat and heartfelt vocals to serenade his co-vocalist and wife of 16 years, Morgane Stapleton.
“It takes a woman who sees the best part of me through all that I am.”
Meanwhile, when “I Think I’m In Love With You” dropped as a single in September, it became one of my most-played songs. The groovy beat and alluring vocals created a whole new atmosphere in the album. His love songs are simply unmatched and could never be overplayed.
“You are the light I want to see. You’re all of everything to me. You are the reasons that I am.”
Grammy-nominated “White Horse” is next, and I can guarantee this will be a country hit for the rest of the year. He performed it at the Country Music Association Awards last week with solid vocals and rock roots powerful enough to make a grown man cry.
“If that’s the kind of love you wanna wait for, hold on tight, girl, I ain’t there yet.”
I know I’ve already singled out three songs about love, but I can’t skip out on “Higher.” Stapleton truly is the reason country music still exists. This song is a breath of fresh air in an environment where pop-country is becoming increasingly popular. He took this song “Higher” by reaching the peak of his vocal ability and providing emotion in every line.
“I could board an aeroplane and look down across the land, but it could never reach that place that I know your sweet lovin’ can.”
Conversely, “The Bottom” is a glimpse at addiction and the denial of reality. Together, he and his wife lament a story of longing for someone and coping with alcohol. In true country fashion, they sing a song for all those going through a heartbreak with no escape.
“And the bottle holds the whiskey. The whiskey holds the man.”
The album continues with more beautiful love songs and passionate laments of loss and sorrow. “Higher” provides the perfect dose of country roots and soul. It has been “The Joy of My Life” to hear Stapleton’s passionate voice again.