15 Songs, 52 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Cody Johnson could’ve jumped to the majors some time ago. Nashville courted the East Texas musician after he amassed a reputation for boisterous concerts and authentic songwriting, both of which he captured across six self-released albums. But Johnson took his time. That makes getting to his major-label debut, Ain’t Nothin’ to It, feel more like a breeze and less like a battle. With four-on-the-floor drums and howling fiddle, he throws a rollicking good time on the roadhouse track “Honky Tonk Mood,” and invites his haters to take a seat on the intrepid backroads jam “Doubt Me Now.” He also stacks the album with sentimental fare, like sharing secrets to a long, happy life on the title track. (Hint: “There ain’t nothin’ to it.”) What brings it all together is Johnson’s award-winning voice. With a crystalline polish, he blends a traditional country sound with homegrown East Texas touches and fully leans into his breakthrough moment.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Cody Johnson could’ve jumped to the majors some time ago. Nashville courted the East Texas musician after he amassed a reputation for boisterous concerts and authentic songwriting, both of which he captured across six self-released albums. But Johnson took his time. That makes getting to his major-label debut, Ain’t Nothin’ to It, feel more like a breeze and less like a battle. With four-on-the-floor drums and howling fiddle, he throws a rollicking good time on the roadhouse track “Honky Tonk Mood,” and invites his haters to take a seat on the intrepid backroads jam “Doubt Me Now.” He also stacks the album with sentimental fare, like sharing secrets to a long, happy life on the title track. (Hint: “There ain’t nothin’ to it.”) What brings it all together is Johnson’s award-winning voice. With a crystalline polish, he blends a traditional country sound with homegrown East Texas touches and fully leans into his breakthrough moment.

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