Album Review: Gary Allan – Greatest Hits

Brody Vercher | March 6th, 2007

Gary Allan - Greatest Hits I’ll start off by disclosing that Gary Allan has been among my favorite artists since I discovered him a little over six years ago and pretty much anything I say about the guy is going to be a little biased. I can’t help it though, he consistently puts out insanely, superb material and in my humble opinion is sorely under appreciated. I’ve had friends who wouldn’t have anything to do with country music until I used brute force to make them listen to Smoke Rings In The Dark. Needless to say, they were converted.

But, I digress. Last month I asked if there was still any significance to Greatest Hits albums with the dawn of digital downloads and the answers were overwhelmingly in favor of them for the sheer reason that if you haven’t listened to an artist much in the past the hits album is a great place to start. So, if you haven’t heard very much Gary Allan in the past, start off with the Greatest Hits. If you become enamored with his sound, go back and check out some of his previous albums. He has plenty of jewels waiting to be discovered, and if you’re looking for a recommendation, my personal favorite album is Smoke Rings In The Dark.

The only two songs on the Greatest Hits that weren’t included on a previous album are “A Feelin’ Like That” and “As The Crow Flies,” although the former has been released as a single for a while now. “As The Crow Flies” is an upbeat song that Allan almost screams about a free spirited guy always on the run, “the next town is never too hard to find, it’s never that far as a crow flies.” Despite the quasi-screaming, I like the song, it’s a southern rock sound that works for him and will surely get the crowd into his live shows. “A Feelin’ Like That” is a quintessential Gary Allan song about a guy who has “done it all and seen it all” but can’t find anything that gives him the same feeling as a former love that he left behind.

I’d love to be a little indulgent and go on and on about the rest of the tracks included on the album, but I’ll spare you all the gushing and just say that Allan is highly recommended by me.

Tracks

  1. A Feelin’ Like That
  2. Right Where I Need To Be
  3. Songs About Rain
  4. Smoke Rings In The Dark
  5. Her Man
  6. Best I Ever Had
  7. Nothing On But The Radio
  8. Man To Man
  9. The One
  10. Lovin’ You Against My Will
  11. It Would Be You
  12. Man Of Me
  13. Tough Little Boys
  14. At The Crow Flies
  15. Life Ain’t Alway Beautiful

5 Stars

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  1. Baron Lane
    March 6, 2007 at 12:41 pm

    Gary Allen is the real deal(Tough All Over, anyone?) but I question a “Greatest Hits” album from anyone less than 20 years on in thier career. If your a newbie and need a pimer hit thier MySpace page and go nuts.

    Why not a live album or odds and sides (outtakes)?

    Nice review though. Love to see Allen live.

  2. Brody Vercher
    March 6, 2007 at 12:58 pm

    I generally share your sentiment about artists putting out Greatest Hits albums too early in their careers, but Allan has had a number of great songs, and the Hits album should help garner him some new fans. I don’t think a MySpace page has enough samples for someone to truly appreciate how great he is, either.

    A live album would have been nice. He sings a few songs live that I don’t think he’ll be cutting in the studio anytime, so it would have been cool to get those.

    I’ve seen him live a couple of times, he puts on quite a show. I’ve seen a lot of artists sip on a beer during their shows, he chugs whiskey straight from the bottle. At the last concert, he pulled out a megaphone to sing the ending to He Can’t Quit Her to get the same effect as his studio version, it was pretty surreal.

  3. Baron Lane
    March 6, 2007 at 3:52 pm

    Nice. I saw Dale Watson a few weeks back at the Stagecoach in Ft. Worth and he drank every beer and whiskey that was bought for him that night. I stopped counting at 12.

  4. Katlin Lang
    July 17, 2007 at 12:39 pm

    Aww, man. I’d killed to see him live. But I guess I’ll just have to wait my turn… which sucks. I actually kinda liked the scream on As The Crow Flies, but he doesn’t really scream it. It’s more like a yowl, like an old tom cat or something. Either way, I think it totally adds to a song when he does that!

  5. Krista
    October 31, 2007 at 7:57 am

    Brody – I totally share your opinion of Gary Allan. He is the best out there hands down. I bought Smoke Rings having only heard “Right Where I Need to Be”, I was sucked right in to his magic and bought the rest of his albums in quick succession. When will he headline his own tour? What will finally get him over that hump? Radio sure isn’t his friend. At least not here in the Baltimore area

    Rock on Gary!!!

  6. Drew
    October 27, 2008 at 12:52 am

    Awesome album, a rating well deserved.

  7. Vicki
    May 7, 2009 at 5:40 am

    I love Gary Allan. I feel in love with his “Tough All Over” album. I just saw his video again on GAC yesterday “Best I Ever Had”, and missed that dripping with emotion voice of his. So I did a search on here and I’m going out to buy his Greatest Hits Album. THANKS!

  8. Bubblz
    November 6, 2009 at 4:21 am

    i love this album!!! any chance to get the half skeleton bronco rider as a pic of possibly a tattoo or somethin?? i would love that!!!

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