Twenty years after his debut self-titled album, Joe Nichols is preparing to release his ninth studio album.
In anticipation of his new record, Freaks Like Me, Nichols has released the title track as his lead single.
The song, written by Josh Thompson, Monty Criswell and Lynn Hutton, features a more rock-influenced sound than any of Nichols’ previous releases. While this evolution seems like a step in the right direction for Nichols, the predictable lyrical content of the song is overall disappointing.
“Freaks Like Me” is a country anthem that tries to appeal to mainstream listeners a little too hard. It crosses into the cliched territory that seems like a creative step back for Nichols. Although there are plenty of listeners who will get behind its message of patriotism and Southern manners, it’s a very hollow sentiment.
The second verse, which half-heartedly proclaims, “I can’t seem to smell or tell the difference between a pile of bull or a pile of politicians,” could have marked the beginning blunt and heartfelt message, but instead spirals into an eye-roll worthy line about “six packs and six strings and two-dollar blue jeans.”
As a longtime fan of Nichols, I hope this isn’t a true representation of his upcoming album. Click below and hear “Freaks Like Me” for yourself.