Nashville country-rock band Lanco have returned with the intense new song “Rival,” the follow-up to their 2018 single “Born to Love You.” The new track is also the first release from the group’s upcoming second album.
The easygoing acoustic groove that leads off “Rival” is something of a fake-out — it’s soon replaced by thunderclap drums, multi-tracked electric guitar and a soaring, wordless whoa-oh melody. Singer Brandon Lancaster, who wrote the song with Lanco drummer Tripp Howell — their first songwriting collaboration to date — offers a message of grit and determination from the underdog’s point of view. “I’m the one that you heard about/outside of the in crowd,” he sings. Producer Jay Joyce, who oversaw the group’s debut Hallelujah Nights, turns it all into a characteristically ear-grabbing recording that blends hard rock bombast with electronic elements and sudden, pace-changing bursts of quiet.
“There’s so much pressure to be like someone else or to live up to some outside expectation, especially with social media and how perfect it makes everything look,” says Lancaster in a release. “We wrote this song from the perspective of no matter where you come from, be proud of who you are and the way you’re creating your own path.
Lanco released their debut album Hallelujah Nights early in 2018, and enjoyed their first Number One hit with the now-Double Platinum “Greatest Love Story.” They’re currently out on the road as support for Luke Combs’ headlining Beer Never Broke My Heart Tour.