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10 Best Country and Americana Songs of the Week: Florida Georgia Line, Jason Eady

FGL’s new b-side “Colorado,” Eady’s “Calaveras County,” Little Big Town’s warm-weather anthem and more tracks to hear now

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Florida Georgia Line's song "Colorado" is one of the best country songs of the week.

An unexpected musical direction from Florida Georgia Line, the latest from troubadour Jason Eady and the reverberating new single from Michigan Rattlers help make up the 10 country and Americana songs you must hear this week.

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Cordovas, “This Town’s a Drag”

With new song “This Town’s a Drag,” Cordovas announced That Santa Fe Channel, their latest album, due August 10th, and their first for ATO Records. Produced by the Milk Carton Kids’ Kenneth Pattengale, “This Town’s a Drag” takes stock of a “straight-laced” town with “no drugs” or anything too fun to be found. The track boasts a laid-back arrangement that still feels tight, offering up some room for noodling while showcasing the serious chops for which the jammy Americana band has become known. B.M.

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Jason Hawk Harris, “I’m Afraid”

Sometimes the fear of god is more unsettling than any demons the mind can muster. In “I’m Afraid,” ex-Show Ponies member Jason Hawk Harris channels the confession of a childhood friend scared stiff by his mother’s unsettling piety, pairing it with a ripcord beat, boogieing piano, and electric guitar that tears off notes in jagged shards. Harris’ beleaguered warnings and nasally delivery are reminiscent of Mountain Goats’ John Darnielle, but his message is more about self-preservation than faith. Or, as he puts it, “Buddy, you can’t be too careful when it comes to holy ghosts.” J.G.

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Florida Georgia Line, “Colorado”

With their two newest songs, Florida Georgia Line took something of an unexpected left turn into roots-pop, suspenders and all. While the duo’s new single is “Simple,” the rollicking song they performed at the CMT Awards, it’s the b-side “Colorado” that really steals the ole medicine show. With its twangy guitar and Appalachian flourishes, it’s more country than we’ve heard from FGL in a while, and is anchored by one of their most clever lyrical couplets to date: “I’ve got friends from Colorado, I’ve got friends from Tennessee / So I’ve got something in a bottle, and I’ve got something from a seed.” B.M. 

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The Dryes, “Amen”

Husband-wife duo the Dryes sing their origin story in the slinky “Amen,” mingling potent sexuality with the salvation of love. “I met him singing in the church choir, lit up my heart like that holy fire,” sings Katelyn Drye over a scuzzy guitar riff that recalls Norman Greenbaum’s classic “Spirit in the Sky” and a strutting beat that could make the most conservative church lady clutch her pearls. Husband Derek adds harmonies in the chorus breakdown, a down-low gospel chant that asks the rhetorical question: “Can I get an amen?” With a groove this tough, absolutely. J.F.

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Clarence Bucaro, “Passionate Kind”

While other songs on his exceptional LP Passionate Kind mine social issues and a worldly view, the title track, a gentle folk ballad about a complicated woman – whose complications are worth dealing with – is as romantic and refreshing as it is barbed with cautionary wisdom. “She knows every line of Shakespeare by heart,” he sings. “Says ‘love and betrayal are only inches apart’ / You gotta watch what you say or she’ll send you away.” The mesmerizing video accompanying the tune features Bucaro’s visual muse, acclaimed ballerina Juliet Doherty, who also appeared in his recent clip for “Sleepwalker.” S.B.

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Ana Egge, “Girls, Girls, Girls”

Whistles, horns and a slew of New York City allusions highlight Ana Egge’s “Girls, Girls, Girls,” the breezy opener of the Brooklyn folksinger’s new album White Tiger. Egge celebrates a New York that felt welcoming to all: singing with a Joni Mitchell croon and the wide-eyed optimism of an artist new to her city. But that was then. Now Egge has been around the block – and become a favorite of fellow songwriters Lucinda Williams and Shawn Colvin in the process – and she’s reflecting with some world-weariness on those heady early days, when her city was “the place to be.” J.H.

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