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CountryMusicIsLove: Review of David Nail's "The Sound of a Million Dreams"
David Nail has an instantly recognizable voices. Like Willie, Vince, and Reba, the minute his voice comes out of the speakers, there is no mistaking him for someone else. That’s one of the reasons his sophomore album is so highly anticipated; his fans can’t get enough of that voice! It’s smooth, it’s soulful and he manages to paint pictures with his words. The Sound Of A Million Dreams definitely does not disappoint! With three of the eleven tracks co-written by David, the album is one that you can put on and not skip a single track.
His sophomore album opens with “Grandpa’s Farm,” a track with an R&B vibe and a piano groove that makes you want to sway along. The song tells the story of a city girl who has returned to her family’s farm and is getting a tour from a local country boy. The theme is one that has been heard before, but Nail’s wailing voice at the end paired with the southern rock vibe of the song make it sound unlike anything heard on the radio these days.
The first single off the album, “Let It Rain,” which is currently climbing towards the Top 10, covers another familiar topic in country music. Nail, who co-wrote the song about infidelity with hit-maker Jonathan Singleton, makes the song so believable because of the emotion that comes through in his performance. It’s a fantastic song on the radio, but one of those that is even better when experienced live.
Another co-write for David on the album is “I Thought You Knew,” which was written with Dave Haywood and Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum. With sentiments like “I’ll follow you like a bridge to the end of the world/I’ll take you with me everywhere I go girl” and “I’m closing in on my last chance to let you know,” the song is easily relatable with its tale of a guy who had expressed his love for his girl but it wasn’t enough.
Another ballad on the album is “That’s How I’ll Remember You.” The message and imagery in this song is perfect. Everyone has had a bad break up, a love gone wrong, but this song reminds the listener to remember the good things and life lessons that came out of those relationships. It’s hard to listen to lyrics such as “Wakin’ up in the sand/sunburn on my nose/you screamed and squeezed my hand/when your east Kentucky toes hit the Atlantic” and not picture the scene.
Perhaps one of the best songs on the album and one that will be on repeat for a lot of fans is “Half Mile Hill.” It’s a plea for help, a song about being lost. What makes it great is that it could be about love or family or school or work, it’s not confined to one topic. “Wishing I could fly like a cut string kite/ Tapping on the floor of Heaven/Is anybody listening?” are lyrics that get stuck in your head because everyone has had those days when they wish they could just escape. And if that song doesn’t make it on your playlist, the title track of the album, “The Sound Of A Million Dreams” is sure to find a spot. The melody is beautiful and the lyrics are impeccable. One of music’s biggest appeals to people is its quality of evoking a memory from the past with a simple lyric. This song is sure to accomplish that. Upon first listen, listeners will be flooded with flashes of their past that are paired up with a certain song. There’s no way anyone will be able to skip over this song once it hits the speakers.
No one can dispute the fact that David Nail has not had an easy career. The Missouri native was initially let go from the record label that ended up re-signing him and even then things weren’t perfect. But with a string of hits with “Red Light” and the Grammy nominated
“Turning Home” followed by his latest single “Let It Rain,” David Nail seems to have finally found a foothold in the country music scene. The Sound Of A Million Dreams is a strong, well-balanced effort that is packed with songs that both complement and manage to enhance Nail’s voice and story-telling ability and definitely has the potential to be the breakout album of his career.
Other standout tracks:
Desiree: Originally recorded by Keith Urban’s group “The Ranch,” Nail has said that it is one of the album’s that influenced him the most when he moved to town. It stands out because it’s more up-tempo than what fans have heard from David Nail, but that’s exactly why it’s worth a listen.
Catherine: This song originally came from the wedding vows he wrote for his wife, Catherine. It’s melody is pretty and it’s lyrics are honest. It’s what every hopeless romantic dreams of, a song just for them. What more needs to be said than that?
-Jayme O., CMIL Contributor