From the late 1980s through until surprisingly recently, it was a borderline sin to say the ‘c’ word. Country. First it was derided for being hopelessly out of kilter with the modern world, then it was made more palatable with re-branding – “Americana”; “Nu-Country”. The latter in particular was particularly baffling – the idea that country was only ever old people or only ever had one sound is ridiculous. However, it finally seems that the world has come to its sense and it’s fine to say country again. So, with no further ado, introduce yourself to Chris Andreucci’s new country EP, What Don’t Kill You.
Much as Chris is based in Glasgow, there’s no denying his country chops. Signed to Nashville label, Century Music Group, 2020 was going to be the year that he moved to the revered home of country, before COVID lockdowns put a stop to the huge gig in Glasgow that would have secured the relocation. Undeterred, this EP is testament to his skills as songwriter, musician and singer. The songs already feel well lived-in. Comfortable storytelling covering the usual themes of loss, regret, booze and the likes but with a genuine air that they’ve already become standards. It’s seamless, quality stuff but it’s not going to spook the horses.
What really rings out on this EP is Chris Andreucci’s vocals. Particularly on the tracks Drinking Song and Freedom Pass, there is both a confidence and a vulnerability that is incredibly alluring. The guitar playing is extremely fluid too but it’s the voice which stays with you and it really does elevate him to that top level of musicians who seem to be able to make music the same way the rest of us take making sandwiches for granted.