Nashville’s American Young Prepare To Release New Album “AYII”

The long-awaited sophomore album ‘AYII‘ from duo American Young (Kristy Osmunson/Jon Stone) arrives on 19th November via Curb Records, and features eleven tracks all but one the pair have had a hand in writing. The exception is their stunning cover of the John Anderson penned “Seminole Wind”, a hit in 1992 for the prolific singer/songwriter and sadly as relevant today with its focus on man’s destruction of the environment for economic gain… some of you may already be familiar with this reinterpretation, as along with two other album tracks it appeared on their 2019 EP “Soundtrack of Your Life“.

Kristy and Jon both found success in Nashville before joining forces in 2013, releasing their debut album just a year later, and have gained a reputation for their impressive songwriting and glorious harmonies, both of which are evident in abundance on the upcoming album including its opening track and AY’s most recent single, “Happy Again“. Talking about the song, the duo say it is “a hymn about the resurrection of a broken heart. Sometimes we get used to being numb, and this is a song about waking up and not being OK with just being OK“. A beautiful ballad with an uplifting message in its gorgeous lyrics, it also highlights both Kristy and Jon as strong vocalists in their own right.

The focus on moving on after a breakup continues on the next two songs on the track listing, in fact these first three tracks are my personal picks from this this all-round very strong album.
Some Girl“, which for me is one of the highlights of the album, is another slow tempo song and I really love its dynamics, particularly the anthemic chorus. It sees Jon on lead vocals trying to convince himself that one day he’ll find love with someone who’ll “see the me you couldn’t see” and enable him to finally break free from the feelings he still has for his ex . Again, fantastic lyrics and as on much of the album some stand out lead guitar and a great drumming… the arrangements throughout the tracks make for a much more expansive sound in general than on their 2014 release.
Whiskey Don’t Work” is a very catchy mid tempo country/pop crossover song which has really grown on me with every listen (loving the mix of trad country instrumentation in the arrangement, including fiddle which I assume is courtesy of Kristy). As you’ll probably guess, it’s about trying to get over a breakup by drowning your sorrows, nothing new in that but I like how Jon and Kristy alternate on lead vocals in the verses, and harmonise beautifully as usual in the choruses, both trying and failing to forget each other.
Another duet follows, “Let You Down” , which tackles the subject of fearing that past experiences will impact negatively on a new relationship, and in particular their new partner. “I don’t want to let you down, dang is hard to tell the truth” Jon sings at the start, “someone that ain’t broke may be a better fix for you“. But Kristy is full of reassurances that he has her support whatever the future throws at them… “Baby you have my heart now, I ain’t scared of no storm clouds“. What could be quite an overly schmaltzy write is really uplifting and absolutely beautiful …Lady A vibes for me.
Just one more song which leapt out at me straight away and definitely deserves a mention here is “Say It To Me Sober” which was released as a single last year, and it’s easy to see why. It’s message is one I’m sure a lot of us can relate to, drink doing the talking but is it a case of the truth coming out or something that will be regretted (or even totally forgotten about) the next morning? Alongside the infection chorus, which i can envisage fans singing along with when performed live, it’s another track with great dynamics amid the duo’s amazing vocals.

This album really shows how American Young have continue to develop in every respect and it is definitely well worth the wait. As yet there’s no pre-save link available but you can pre-order a physical copy and find more  information about the duo at  www.americanyoung.comwhere of course you’ll also find links to all their socials 
AYII Track Listing:
1. Happy Again (Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger / Jason Micelle)
2. Some Girl (Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger / Jacob Powell)
3. Whiskey Don’t Work(Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Jason Afable)
4. Let You Down (Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger / Dan Couch)
5. Gonna Be You (Kristy Osmunson / Will Garrett / Mark Stults)
6. Soundtrack Of Your Life(Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger)
7. Falling Star (Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger / Rodney Clawson)
8. Seminole Wind (John Anderson)
9. Say It To Me Sober (Jon Stone / Kyle Schlienger / Rodney Clawson)
10. Die Another Day (Kristy Osmunson / Jon Stone / Billy Montana / Phil Barton)
11. Country Girls (Jon Stone / Kristy Osmunson / Lee Brice / John Vesley) 
(All tracks are produced by American Young, Kyle Schlienger except for ‘Country Girls’ which is produced by Jon Stone, John Vesley, Lee Brice)
 
for more information, visit www.americanyoung.com.
Review written by Lesley Hastings (twitter.com/lesleyhastings)
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