Chris Lane

Laps Around the Sun

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Continuing his trawl through 2010s country archetypes, Chris Lane refashions himself as a beach-ready bro on 2018's Laps Around the Sun. Working once again with producer Joey Moi, Lane retains some of the fleet modern soul flair of 2016's Girl Problems -- the major-label debut that found him abandoning the straight-ahead affectations of Let's Ride, the 2012 indie release he made with the Chris Lane Band -- but doubles down on breezes borrowed from Kenny Chesney, while lifting a bit of the sunny disposition of his tour mates Florida Georgia Line. On the whole, Lane is way sweeter than either of these idols, yet he's also a little bit too eager to please. Pandering is a pleasure for Chris Lane, who happily sings such trend-happy bubblegum as "New Phone, Who's This" while steering his entire album in the direction of the kind of country that could easily be played at waiting rooms across America. When seen in the context of Lane's career, Laps Around the Sun seems a bit calculating, but taken on its own, it's an amiable and agreeable piece of country-pop product, one that never deviates from the sunny mood it establishes within its first minutes.

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