Monday, April 30th, 2018

Keith Urban ft. Julia Michaels – Coming Home

Zombie Uncle Kracker vs. Symphonic Robot Duck: coming to a theater near you!


Alfred Soto: Although he still sells records and, more importantly, reliably sells out stadiums, Keith Urban must be looking at Brad Paisley’s recent returns and tugging at his collar. The banjo-as-sound-effect and sound-effect-as-sound-effect that are the hallmarks of the Sam Hunt woodshop swamp a song he would have sprinkled a shitload of guitars on in 2011. I hope Julia Michaels appreciated the payday.

Will Adams: The formula of pairing massive country dude and up-and-coming female pop singer for as broad appeal as possible feels increasingly cynical. J.R. Rotem manages to do something interesting with the genre purée in spots — namely, the breakdowns where the slide guitar and tuned kicks circle each other. The rest is Man of the Woods-level bilge which neither Keith nor Julia sound too invested in.

Stephen Eisermann: Apparently, Keith Urban was one of the seven people who enjoyed Rob Thomas’s solo albums; so much so, in fact, that he full on copied one of the tracks and slapped on Julia Michaels to make sure that nobody would notice. Jokes on you, though, Keith, as I was also one of the seven who enjoyed those albums and Rob did this style much better.

Jonathan Bradley: “Coming Home” shuffles and handclaps with a sparse groove like it’s the back half of the 1990s and Beck has just taught OPM and Primitive Radio Gods that dusty beats and looped guitar fragments deserve to belong on alternative radio. It’s a neat sound — and one entirely ill-suited to Keith Urban’s over-earnest over-emoting. I just hope it’s a big enough hit to garner copy-cats: country music should have its own “Steal My Sunshine,” even if it has to endure zombie Uncle Kracker to get it.

Edward Okulicz: This would be so much better if someone — anyone — just let loose a bit. The production is intricate and fussy and hard to grasp on to if you’re looking for a hook, and Urban is stiff and unsympathetic, though it’s quite a nice melody. He goes home to his famous wife and an enormous house but sounds too bored to live. I had to play Michaels’s verse in isolation from the rest of the song to remember it. Someone put a real guitar on this thing!

Micha Cavaseno: Quiet as kept, this is really just a Julia Michaels song featuring Keith Urban, but it’s his attempt at negotiating with trying to go after some of that Rhett/Hunt money. Most ironically, the results is that this wall of cacophonous samples and gimmicks ends up feeling like Keith Urban’s “Jack & Diane,” albeit a bit too peacocky in the vocal performance. For all the whizzing about however, there isn’t much of a solid song to land, and it’s ultimately a waste of Michaels’s time and talents.

Nortey Dowuona: Flubbed guitar strumming doesn’t stop the monkey drums and flat-nosed bass from saving this average Aussie rock from crumbling. Also, Julia Michaels slinks in at the last bridge and swipes the song away.

Iain Mew: The text about wanting to go back somewhere where everybody knows his name is uninvolving, and Michaels’s verse an unnecessary diversion, but “Coming Home” makes those minor concerns with its sound. I’m always likely to go for anything with a part scored for symphonic robot duck, and the cacophonous crescendo approach gives it the feeling of a big journey home with all of the exertion and anticipation involved.

Tim de Reuse: The bait-and-switch rhyme in the chorus caught me off-guard, I’ll grant, but Urban’s complaints about the soul-sucking evils of city life are just too shallow and unconvincing. Come on, man, griping about the alienation of modern city life is the lowest-hanging fruit — take thirty seconds with a thesaurus and get at least a little fake-deep, you know, make a show of it! Maybe it’s just because I have too complicated a relationship with my own hometown to relate to the song’s central premise, but there isn’t a damn line in here memorable or thoughtful or catchy enough to justify the four-chord drama it so weepily indulges in.

Reader average: [7] (1 vote)

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2 Responses to “Keith Urban ft. Julia Michaels – Coming Home”

  1. fucking A+ subhead

  2. I’m just hoping for fanart :D