The bad thing about exceptionally great albums is the anticipation its sets for a follow-up. If this album is good, the next one ought to be spectacular.
Hence, the sophomore slump.
Technically speaking, A Long Way from Home Anywhere isn’t a sophomore slump for country singer Bruce Robison. This album is Robison’s third overall but his second for a major label. If anything, his second disc, Wrapped, put Robison at a level where he could either appease or disappoint.
He does a little of both, really.
Robison is an excellent songwriter with a talent for writing some really heart-wrenching tunes. He just knows where to throw in that particular turn of phrase to make a country weepie sound almost Beethoven-esque.
Some of those qualities appear in a number of songs on A Long Way Home from Anywhere, but paired with some divergently-themed songs — the honky-tonk frat of “The Good Life”; the saccharine bouciness of “Just Married” — the effect of those poignant emotions are undercut.
Wrapped did much of the same, but it spread its breadth of material over the course of an hour. Clocking under 40 minutes, A Long Way Home from Anywhere is too short to do any of its songs any justice.