Song Review: Chris Janson – “Good Vibes”

The short version: Despite some good intentions, “Good Vibes” comes across as lazy rather than fun.

  • Writers: Chris Janson, Ashley Gorley, Zach Crowell
  • Rating: 5/10

The long version: If you’re a fan of consistency, Chris Janson may not be the artist for you.

Granted, it’s not like the strategy has failed him yet. For every serious, more mature offering you get from Janson such as “Holdin’ Her” or “Drunk Girl” (despite that song’s flawed execution), he’ll usually follow it up with something on the opposite spectrum such as the dumb, “Fix A Drink.” As such, it’s really not a surprise to see a song called “Good Vibes” was selected as his next single.

While not bad, “Good Vibes” lacks any sort of unique elements to stand out as 2019’s summer jam. The production is bright and punchy, yet at the same time it lacks any distinctive characteristics to add more firepower to the track. The mix features a fairly basic combination of a bright, buzzy recurring electric guitar riff, loud drums and hints of dobro to create an upbeat atmosphere. Between this, Janson’s naturally charismatic delivery and a fairly strong chorus, “Good Vibes” succeeds in its attempt to sound like a summer jam.

But despite this being a fairly innocuous summer anthem released too early, lyrical content still matters to a degree. Here, the lyrical content is what furthers render “Good Vibes” as generic and uneventful. Escaping the negative aspects of the news and social media is certainly understandable, but carelessly brushing them off as if they’re nothing is worse than some of Kenny Chesney’s escapist tracks. Sure, Janson mostly focuses on himself here and what he needs to do to find comfort, but when he eventually suggests that we too should all cut back and just have a good time, it feels incredibly shallow in its execution.

Even if you argue the song is Jason simply being thankful for what he has, the song is still lazy. The verses are incredibly light, and all you really understand about Janson is that he needs a full cup and a woman to make him happy, because that’s a perspective we haven’t heard in country music. Lastly, we didn’t need a bridge where Janson attempts to rap. We never needed that.

Overall, “Good Vibes” is an early summer song that doesn’t offer a lot either way. It’s bright and breezy enough to have some sort of rollicking edge to it, but there’s no memorable lyrical turn of phrase or hook to make it memorable, and the sad part is that instead of feeling fun, “Good Vibes” just feels incredibly shallow.

(Strong 5/10)

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