Music review: Trace Adkins - ‘The Way I Wanna Go’

Trace Adkins - ‘The Way I Wanna Go’

Go big or go home appears to be the motivation behind “The Way I Wanna Go” from Trace Adkins.

While celebrating the silver anniversary of his "Dreamin' Out Loud" debut release, Adkins seems to be having a blast recording 25 new arrangements that encompass his 25 years of delivering authentic country music.

The title track speaks to the Louisiana native’s desire to go out on his own terms as Adkins defiantly declares, “Lay me down with sunburn on my face/Talk about how I never act my age/Still writing when they try to turn the page/That’s the way I wanna go.”

Songs like “Where I Am Today” and “Finding My Groove” focus on finally feeling at ease with how life’s journey has led to this comfortable stage with Adkins confidently proclaiming, “Got my heart on my sleeve/Nothing to hide, nothing to prove.”

The album finds its party groove when Luke Bryan and Pitbull join the celebration on “Where the Country Girls At.” This rousing anthem is sure to rally the concert crowds as the boys get ready for a rowdy all-nighter by announcing, “Got the mud off my boots/I got the smell good on/Got the truck shined up/See yourself in the chrome.”

The good times continue at full volume during “So Do the Neighbors,” featuring a special guest appearance by Snoop Dogg. All the neighbors know what to expect when Adkins announces, “Speakers on the back porch/Rattling the rafters/Knocking rust off the mailbox/Blowing dust off the tractor.” Indeed, listening to good country music isn’t a solitary act.

Adkins displays a softer side when pairing with Melissa Etheridge on “Love Walks Through the Rain.” The two unmistakable voices blend together to offer comfort and support singing, “Run to my arms/When the sky goes dark/And I'll dance you till the clouds break/Love walks through the rain.”

Other highlights include Adkins and Blake Shelton having a little fun on “If I Was a Woman” and Keb’ Mo’ and Stevie Wonder providing the rhythm and blues for “Memory to Memphis.”

“The Way I Wanna Go” is all about staying true to yourself. Adkins demonstrates this best by proudly declaring, “Got a little cash in the bank, gas in the tank/A little don't care what they think.”

Just like Frank Sinatra, Adkins has always done it his own way.

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