Joe Nichols

It's All Good

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Strangely, it’s possible to take Joe Nichols’ unassuming album titles to heart. He celebrated Real Things in 2007, found Old Things New in 2009, and now, two years later and after his first greatest-hits collection, he’s decided that It’s All Good and this, his sixth major-label effort, certainly does roll along on his casual charm. Nichols never pushes hard and that easy touch is winning, particularly when the guitars are cranked, pushing the album close to rocking country. His roots may run a little deeper than modern country -- he effectively channels George Jones on the title track, never once seeming forced -- but the key to Nichols' appeal is that he’s a thoroughly modern guy who has an old-school attitude, and that swagger keeps his ballads from being too saccharine, his poppier numbers from being too sweet. Perhaps he could stand to have some knockout singles and perhaps he’s a little too comfortable giving the people what they want, but Nichols is always reliable, always likable, and this album is definitely all good.

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