Brad Paisley

5th Gear | Broken Bow
By WERNER TRIESCHMANN  |  June 27, 2007
3.5 3.5 Stars
Paisley’s winsome 5th Gear is about as light as Miranda Lambert’s Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is dark — in a good way. And both figure to be among the best albums Nashville produces this year. Paisley has the sharpest sense of humor in country music; his 2005 album, Time Well Wasted, included the drinking-song-to-end-all-drinking songs, “Alcohol,” and this one has “Ticks,” likely the sexiest song ever written about searching for blood-sucking bugs. What’s more, none of Paisley’s peers can match the exuberance he shows on “All I Wanted Was a Car,” a tune about the teenage gift that equals freedom, or even the unalloyed optimism on display in the soaring “It Did.” His bluegrass-flavored duet with Carrie Underwood, “Oh Love,” is a heartbreaker, and his guitar work throughout is top-notch. Maybe his skits with the Kung Pao Buckaroos are corny, but if you haven’t heard these jokes before, you’ll likely be sharing the one about Viagra with all your friends.
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