Country music has been brimming with husband and wife couples that are renowned for making fantastic music together. Chris Stapleton and Morgane Stapleton, Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires, Johnny Cash and June Carter, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill… maybe not? Okay, I’m scraping the barrel now. Joking aside, Chris and Adam Carroll are no exception to the rule, now releasing their debut album as a duo after touring together as co-headliners for a number of years after marrying in 2013. ‘Good Farmer’ is a culmination of songs that they have been writing and playing live for the past 6 years.
What really grabs your attention early on in this record, is how well the duo share vocal parts and accompany each other with harmonies. They really seem to pay a lot of attention to detail and when to leave space for the other to have a moment. The duo pass off a light-hearted storytelling tone in their lyric writing, especially on opening track ‘Hi-Fi Love’, where they portray playfulness as they trade vocal lines. Other vocal topics include a tribute to Chris on the track ‘Tough As Nails’, the love that Chris and Carroll found in each other immediately in ‘Love You Already’ and a tribute towards all of the woman that have helped Chris along the way in her musical and life’s journeys in ‘Good Farmer’.
Adam’s strong southern drawl lets him tell stories in a very traditional fashion. He allows the songs’ meanings to come through strongly throughout the album. James McMurtry springs to mind when you listen to his monotone vocal style. Chris’ sweet, soft tone complements Adam’s voice perfectly, adding a brightness that brings the songs to life in such a gracious way.
You can tell that Chris & Adam Carroll have been perfecting their trade over many years on this debut release. You find yourself almost glad that they haven’t released anything as a duo any sooner as you get to hear a collection of songs that have been through the rigorous selection process that has lasted many years and the end product is truly fabulous.