PopMatters // UP AHEAD SHOWCASES A BRIGHT AND DESERVING FUTURE FOR THIS UP-AND-COMER.

UP AHEAD SHOWCASES A BRIGHT AND DESERVING FUTURE FOR THIS UP-AND-COMER.

One thing country music could use nowadays is a bit more honesty. Somewhere between the torch songs and road trip anthems of George Jones and Willie Nelson, a pop sentimentality has dripped into mainstream country music. While it isn’t always equated with cruddy songwriting, we have seen a metric rise in country songs about trucks and beer by the hundreds before our latest “revolution” era of the country scene. Brave souls like Chris Stapleton are leading the way back towards sincere, individualized, and relatable music that dares not just to be another party anthem.

Luckily for Travis Linville, he’s on the right side of this modern day movement. Previously described by fellow folkster Hayes Carll as an artist who performs and writes with “depth, heart, and soul”, the Oklahoman singer-songwriter sings and plays with an honesty that feels downright delectable in a current day scenario surrounded by party-hard lyrics and choruses. “Two Times the Fool” is especially essential, soulful country music listening reminiscent of golden age performers with its sincerity, though the rest of Up Ahead showcases a bright and deserving future for this up-and-comer.

Travis Linville