Single Reviews


KEITH URBAN - Straight Line - A Hit Red Records/Capitol Records Nashville

2022 was lined with single releases from country megastar Keith Urban that included a top 40 showing with “Brown Eyes Baby,” but he was seemingly quiet over the past year, calculating his next output of songs as his rabid fanbase continually buzzed with an unsatiable yearning that needed to be quenched.

He now quenches their dry-mouth thirst as he swings open that promised next chapter with the release of “Straight Line,” the first teaser of his forthcoming project. 

The song, written by Urban, Chase McGill, Jerry Flowers, and Greg Wells, leans its up-tempo vibe into the intrigue that any song from Keith naturally carries as he fuses a variety of sonic styles into a uniquely branded feel that stretches the edge of the blurred lines between country, pop, and rock.

Gliding along the addictively catchy drive of the melody, the lyrics see him reaching that crossroads point of life where it seems to have all gone a little stagnant, mundane, and stuck in its ways, asking through the opening verse of his better half, “Why we livin’ every day in circles,” while also planting the idea of change through the confession, “I don’t wanna just go through the motions.”

Embracing the truth that all they really need is each another to have it completely made, the notion of breaking away together for a fresh start comes further into light through a retrospective remembering of how it used to be as he ignites the possibilities of hitting the gas toward a good life view as he strikes the chorus:

“In a straight line, baby

Hey, whatcha say we're never gonna look back now?

Can't you see the sun shinin'?

You and me drivin' out from under this dark cloud

I wanna know what they mean

When they say life's a dream

Shouldn't we be dreamin' it too?

In a straight line, baby

Startin' now, takin' a straight line (Straight line)

Straight into forever with you

Yeah, with you”

Namechecking the Eagles “Hotel California” in second verse adds a notably influential nod to the overall aura of the song, but the cool thing about this lyric is that it never actually resolves itself. It stays comfortably shaken in that fleeting moment of wanting to break free and taking the carefree leap to do so, but it never actually leaves the starting line to do it.

Because it never moves past that point, “Straight Line” then matches heart to heart with so many of us who want for something more but feel stuck in that place between going for broke or settling in. Couple that connection factor with an unsurprisingly ambitious sound and the tease of an official radio single coming next month (March 2024), and Keith Urban has effectively welcomed us into the fact that he’s just getting this new chapter revved up.

(Review Written By: Jeffrey Kurtis)



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