Wednesday, May 5th, 2021

Sam Hunt – Breaking Up Was Easy in The 90’s

Playing sad trombone on the roof…


Katherine St Asaph: After a brief review of the decade — Breakup Girl; the archives of; esteemed 1994 MTV documentary Sex in the ’90s V: Love Sucks — I have concluded that breaking up was not easy in the ’90s. Speaking of the ’90s, Sam Hunt’s spoken-word no longer sounds like Drake and now sounds like “United States of Whatever.” The song seems almost ashamed of it, backing out after each conversational line to serve up the same chicken-and-dumplings gruel of country radio. Maybe that’d sound fresher in the ’90s.

Mark Sinker: *Adam Curtis voice*: “People thought things were easy in the 90s. But this was a fantasy.” What’s real here in the careful semi-country sound-detail is that woodblock, plock-plocking us unerringly down towards our last end.

Alfred Soto: If breaking up was easier in the nineties, I’ve got a grad school diary Sam has got to read. But the clash between the spoken verses and the yearningly sung chorus creates the dialectical frisson necessary to a song about social media’s penchant for keeping best forgotten memories fresh.

Al Varela: This guy really spends his time stalking his ex’s profile on Instagram, getting blackout drunk in bars, and making up scenarios where she’s as desperate as he is, and he thinks the problem is that he was born in the wrong generation? Bro, maybe you just have an unhealthy attachment to your exes and refuse to let them move on with their lives without inserting yourself in their business somehow.

Nortey Dowuona: Ok, Sam. Why? 1: She’s living it up on HER Instagram while you stare at it. 2: She’s not making any effort to keep in touch with you. 3: You hate watching her live her life without you. Maybe just stop trawling her Instagram, stop hoping she’ll call you again, and start living your own life again. I know it’s gonna be difficult, but there’s no point torturing yourself over fucking up a relationship so deeply she doesn’t even talk to you. I have faith in you, Sam.

Thomas Inskeep: Give Sam Hunt this: he staked out his musical lane early and well, and when you hear one of his singles, you immediately know it’s him. (I heard this over a radio in a restaurant yesterday and pegged it as him within about 10 seconds.) I could do without the click track, but nobody in the country mainstream has his talk-singing down the way Hunt does, and there’s a melancholy to the lyrics that works. And the song’s end, musically, is sweet.

Ian Mathers: It’s rare that the title is the biggest problem with the song, let alone just because it’s too specific in the wrong way. If the title/line was just “Breaking Up Was Easy [less flippant and easily argued thing than ‘in the 90s’],” it’d be at worst kind of inoffensive. Once it became clear this song wasn’t just going to be a jokey trifle about social media or whatever (which would have probably sucked!), the conceit just… kind of stops working, even when I try to frame it as a personal rather than general statement. Someone here thought the heartache could be left generic as long as they had that title. It can’t.

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2 Responses to “Sam Hunt – Breaking Up Was Easy in The 90’s”

  1. Whoa. Way harsh, Tai. I mean, this isn’t a great song to be clear. But I’ll give the dude the premise. Research is indeed showing that social media enables anxiety & depression

  2. lmao the subhead