A reunion with producer Mark Bright, who produced her 2005 album Real Fine Place, may suggest Sara Evans is returning to the country on her 2014 record Slow Me Down, but a better indication of the sound of this album is in its artwork. The glamour shot showcasing Evans' long legs in all their glory is hardly down-home and neither is Slow Me Down. The singer may collaborate with songwriter of the hour Shane McNally on the exceptional "You Never Know," but a better indication of her frame of mind is how Isaac Slade from the Fray is brought in for a duet on "Can't Stop Loving You" and Gavin DeGraw pops up for "Not Over You," a song the AAA crooner co-wrote with pop hitmaker Ryan Tedder. All this suggests how thoroughly pop Slow Me Down is. Forget country-pop -- this is an adult contemporary pop album through and through, all slick surfaces and insistent melodrama, the kind of music made for the crossover diva Evans now is. Evans elegantly matches the oversized arrangements, matching each crescendo and hushed moment, while the songs are cannily constructed pieces of pop, sounding stronger with each play. Certainly, fans hoping that Evans will return to country music will be disappointed, but Slow Me Down is something that is rare in 2014: an unapologetic, big-scale adult pop album, constructed with grace and care.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
feat: Isaac Slade