If “Downtown” is a close representation of Lady Antebellum’s fourth studio album, prepare to sulk. At the very least, it’s a dreadful choice as a lead single.

Lady Antebellum

Capitol Nashville

In its attempt at cuteness, the track oversimplifies itself. The verses narrate oddly specific experiences, but in the most banal “We used to (verb) while we were (verb)” formula. Even the oversaturated cover art has an unpreferable perkiness to it.

Not to mention, where did Charles Kelly go? Lady Antebellum isn’t without its solo vocal numbers, but Hilary Scott shouldn’t swindle the entire track for herself. It’s a misleading approach to preface a new record by showcasing a fraction of the group. Think back to a flawlessly proportioned “Need You Now” or “Just a Kiss” introduction to past albums.

Perhaps Lady A feared fostering a reputation for writing dramatic music. The number of Grammys that Need You Now took home certainly secured everybody’s attention, but “Downtown” isn’t the musical about-face to break that reputation. Focus on writing and promoting tracks like “Our Kind of Love,” rather than poorly replicating Little Big Town.

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