In the span of two albums, Lady Antebellum established themselves as leaders in the country pop genre conquering both country and pop charts around the globe. As a result, anticipation ran high for what the music would sound like on their third album. On May 2, 2011, Lady Antebellum shared the first single "Just a Kiss" in anticipation of their first televised performance of the song on American Idol on May 5th. Did the song live up to expectations? Find out as we check out "Just a Kiss" by Lady Antebellum.
Power Ballad Alert
One of the qualities that made Lady Antebellum's number two pop single "Need You Now" stand out on the radio (as well as one of the Top 10 Adult Pop songs of 2010) is that it was a straight-ahead pop ballad in a sea of rock- and urban-leaning singles, and that allowed the song to shine on its own merits. While "Just a Kiss" exhibits some of the same qualities that made "Need You Now" a major hit, it lacks some of the spark that connected with listeners instantly. It is tough to compare any song to a hit as massive as "Need You Now," but the comparisons here are inevitable as it appears that Lady Antebellum are capitalizing on that past success.
From a musical standpoint, the song is a solid contribution to the power ballad genre with its understated verses leading to a soaring chorus. The vocal collaboration of Charles Kelley and Hillary Scott is a potent combination, and with the addition of Dave Haywood's harmonies on the chorus, it becomes clear that "Need You Now" was not a fluke. All three commit to the song whole-heartedly, and that dedication comes across in the mix.
The only downside of "Just a Kiss" is that the lyrics don't quite measure up to the music. While the story of two lovers realizing that the person they are dating may be "the one" is easy to identify with, lyrically it's a bit simple and basic. The lyrics of the chorus are solid, but with lines like "I know that if we give this a little time / It will only bring us closer to the love we wanna find," there isn't a lot of subtlety in "Just a Kiss." Fortunately, the vocal delivery helps give the lyrics more punch than they would have if it was performed by someone with less vocal ability.
What's The Verdict?
It is safe to say that "Just a Kiss" will be a major hit at country radio from the moment DJs get their hands on the track. Lady Antebellum is about as close to a sure thing that country radio has, and the group is certain to add "Just a Kiss" to their list of country top 10 hits. Whether pop and adult pop radio stations take a liking to the song remains to be seen, but if the enduring popularity of country star Taylor Swift at pop radio is any indication, it may not take much for Lady Antebellum to have another crossover hit with "Just a Kiss."