Country duo Maddie & Tae have had the best beginnings that a musical act could ask for: they burst onto the scene last year with their smash hit Girl In A Country Song, becoming the first female duo to release a debut number one single since The Wreckers in 2006, not to mention three CMT award nominations, TV appearances on the TODAY Show and David Letterman and a support slot for Dierks Bentley’s Sounds Of Summer tour. There is no telling just where the road of success will take the girls, but their next chapter begins with their debut album Start Here, a suitable title and we get to have a look at it.
Maddie & Tae’s music is quite catchy, it’s this sort of country music that gets stuck in your head, especially the satirical Girl In A Country Song. Dramatic moments like the gripping Smoke keeps your attention focused on the pair’s obvious chemistry, their vocals merging to create this power that is voiced to perfection. Second single Fly has also been fairing well on the country charts, and with good reason, its guitar arrangement is simple yet wonderful while the melody and harmonies flow once again. The pace picks up with the energetic Your Side Of Town, but makes way for a more tender yet confident moment with Right Here Right Now. It’s always nice to hear something a little more downbeat, After The Storm Blows Through allows us to hear a rawness we haven’t quite heard yet, closing track Downside Of Growing Up follows the same route.
There is something special about Maddie & Tae, Start Here isn’t written as your typical country album but you can still listen to it and think “yep, that’s definitely a country album”; it doesn’t follow the overused concepts of drunken heartbreak or driving down dirt roads in your truck, the lyrics are more universal and easy to relate to. The girls’ voices are a match made in heaven, their melodies and accompanying harmonies really make the album all the more listenable. The only critique would be that the album features all four songs that were listed on their EP, so fans are really only being treated to eight new songs plus four songs they have already purchased or heard. Start Here is just the beginning for Maddie & Tae, who knows what the future holds for the duo!