Single Review: Brad Paisley - Camouflage
By: Bobby Peacock
As I said when I reviewed "Remind Me," I have often gotten a feeling that Brad Paisley has been phoning it in lately. For every introspective, observant song such as "Anything Like Me," and for every novelty song that holds up to repeated listens such as "Old Alabama", he'll unleash a barnstorm of clichés in equal measure. I mean, "This Is Country Music," "Water," "Then" — those three alone could've been released by nearly any anonymous dude in a cowboy hat. But just when I'm about to give him up, he'll give me one more reminder that yes, he's still got talent and can use it. "Remind Me" was a rather strong argument in that department, and now, so is "Camouflage."
"Camouflage" is definitely better than one would expect from the lyrics. I mean, it's an ode to camouflage, for crying out loud. But it's Paisley's humor in full force again, keeping the song going for one listen and making it sturdy enough for several more. Little details like the high school kid who painted his car camouflage, or the camo tuxes made for the prom, might not be the most credible of imagery. But they're images that are strengthened by Paisley's self-awareness, and a couple clever barbs like "We took pictures in the backyard / Before we went to the dance / And the only thing that you can see / Is our faces and our hands." Oh, and for anyone reading that last verse about how it's "as patriotic as the old red, white and blue"? THAT'S A JOKE. DON'T TAKE IT SERIOUSLY. (Sorry, had to get that out of my system.) Finally, there's also the rather meaty production, making it sound a little heavier and more rowdy than previous Paisley songs.
"Camouflage" is another solid entry in the Brad Paisley catalog. Overall, it matches the tongue-in-cheek nature, sharp and witty lyrics, and fine musicianship that put it in the same league as some of his best humorous songs, such as "Me Neither," "Celebrity" or "Online." Keep doing more of this, Brad. You're so good at it, but sometimes I almost forget that you are.