Canaan Smith

Tucker Luter, Staff Writer

Canaan Smith is a country singer who likes to kick it old school with his unique modern style mixed with the classic country most people know. This is most apparent in his new album called High Country Sounds where he is now free of an overreaching label fracking him to pander to mainstream country. In this album, the listener really gets to hear what Canaan believes to be country and delivers with a pretty unique style in an era of the country where everything else sounds the same.
The best song on his new album is Catch Me if You Can, a song with a classic country style guitar but played with the addition of drums add for a bit of rock to spice this song, making it extremely catchy and fast-paced with a great story being told in the background that really tell us about his roots and where he came from. The song is about moonshine and bootlegging, being from Virginia and being raised in the ’80s and ’90s; it’s clear he saw this happening. Who doesn’t like a good Bonny and Clyde villain story?
If you’re not a fan of country with a touch of rock, American Dream is a much more mellow song on the album that sounds like an updated version of Tim McGraw and his 90’s style country. In this song, the guitar is definitely the lead instrument and Canaan’s southern twang really comes through in this song where he is singing about his American dream.
Another great hit is Mason Jars and Fireflies. It’s definitely a country song but hard to categorize in a subgenre of country. It is very Canaan Smith in a song that I believe is extremely unique to him, with his fantastic mix of the old country, pop, and rock all slammed into one country song about being a country kid growing up like a redneck. This song pulls the chords to any country boy’s hearts with lyrics like “we were just some barefoot mountain kids cannonballing off a bridge” and many others making this song weirdly relatable.
His new album is crammed full of unique-sounding songs. The album also has its share of love songs like Cabin in the Woods and losing sleep over a girl and the typical heartbreak songs like Colder Than You. His album has 12 songs without any sounding the same, yet all scream Canaan Smith with his twangy voice lead guitar, and drums coming in at the right moments without making his nice soft country songs obnoxiously rock. His mixture of different styles really makes his music feel like its own subgenre of the country with songs that anyone can relate to.
This is a very versatile album made for anyone who likes a country song or two and your die-hard country fan won’t scoff at what to them sounds like fake country. I would most certainly recommend his music to a country lover and to people who might not be the fondest of country music.