Norm Brunet put out an album late in 2017, entitled It Don’t Get Better Than This. Recorded at Shining Star Studios in Nashville, it comprises 10 tracks of scrumptious music.
A native of Canada, Brunet was surprised when his music was categorized as Americana in the U.S. It is considered country in his home country, where he is an unpretentious star. Brunet attained fame with the release of his debut album, Me and My Guitar, which hatched four Top 20 singles and two Top 5’s, followed by Life Goes On, which produced one hit single.
Brunet’s music merges country and Americana, as well as some SoCal soft rock into tasty tunes set apart by his rasping, whiskey-marinated voice.
Like Buddy Miller, Brunet’s albums don’t contain any bad songs, but a few stand out for a variety of reasons. For me, the standouts on It Don’t Get Better Than This include “Pour Me Another One,” a country-flavored tune with buttery harmonics and a delicious steel guitar. This song provides the perfect introduction to Brunet’s smoke-filled, alcohol-soaked vocal chords. I love the opening of this song: “Yeah I drink / And I smoke / Hell, I swear / And even like to tell jokes.”
The title track, a soft country tune, features shimmering guitars along with a crying steel guitar and, of course, Brunet’s voice at its scraping best. “I Will” is a tender tune reminiscent of The Eagles on Desperado, full of lightly coruscating guitars and undulating textures. The rhythm is indulgent, easygoing, and gorgeously alluring. Brunet’s chaffing voice is a pleasure to listen to, especially when backed by warm harmonies.
“Good Times and Tan Lines” exhibits Brunet’s ability to belt it out over a country rocker rife with southern flavors. “Out of the Blue” might be my favorite song on the album because of its tropical country colors conjuring up visions of white sandy beaches. The last track, “Heartbreaker Girl,” is another excellent tune, full of throbbing, driving energy and Brunet’s inimitable tones.
Actually, the title of the album says it all: It don’t get better than this. If you’re into tantalizing country music akin to Buddy Miller, music that doesn’t even come close to bro-country, then look no further than Norm Brunet’s latest offering.