Pain Killer

Pain Killer

by Little Big TownLittle Big Town


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Little Big Town have long been compared to Fleetwood Mac, usually due to their lush harmonies and taste for sun-kissed melodic pop. If that analogy holds water -- and it does -- then Pain Killer is Little Big Town's Tusk, the record where the group bends, twists, and reshapes expectations of what the band can do. Coming after the sweet, shiny Tornado, the restless over-saturation in Killer is something of a shock. As pure description, the elements sound strictly mainstream: there are gnarled, distorted guitars, flirtations with electronics, thick walloping rhythms, everything that would seemingly amount to a full-fledged arena-country crossover. Instead of following a predictable pattern, the quartet embarks on a series of detours, seizing each individual track as an opportunity to veer a little further off course. While there's none of the frenzied madness that pulsates underneath Tusk, Little Big Town do slide into a bit of minor-key madness on "Faster Gun" and have to hold their tongue on "Quit Breaking Up with Me"; otherwise they'd spit out profanity. That mischievousness is intertwined with aural adventure on Pain Killer: there's a sense that the group members are goading each other on, daring their bandmates to dabble in a bit of reggae ("Pain Killer"), to add a whistle to a chorus ("Day Drinking"), to write a swaying slow dance about a "Girl Crush," or to turn a bit of back-porch picking into a funky stomp ("Stay All Night"). Even though this record settles into a finale of three successive folk-rock tunes -- all three softly gorgeous -- it's the previous series of left-hand tours that gives Pain Killer its kick: this is the rarest thing in contemporary country, a record with an expansive world-view delivered with a kinetic kick and infallible melodies, a record that gives no indication of where it's going upon first listen but remains compelling upon further spins, after all the dazzle dissipates and Little Big Town's craft shines through.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/21/2014
Label: Capitol Nashville
UPC: 0602537905836
catalogNumber: 002136002
Rank: 2730


  1. Quit Breaking Up With Me
  2. Day Drinking
  3. Tumble and Fall
  4. Pain Killer
  5. Girl Crush
  6. Faster Gun
  7. Good People
  8. Stay All Night
  9. Save Your Sin
  10. Live Forever
  11. Things You Don't Think About
  12. Turn the Lights On
  13. Silver and Gold

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Little Big Town   Primary Artist
Giles Reaves   Percussion,Drums,Keyboards,Vibes,Vocoder,Synthesizer Horn,Synthesizer Pads
Jay Joyce   Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Bass,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Bells,Pump Organ,Mando
John Thomasson   Bass
Jedd Hughes   Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Electric Guitar
Phillip Sweet   Drums
Johnny Duke   Acoustic Guitar,Pedal Steel Guitar,Electric Guitar
Seth Rausch   Drums
Ryan Tyndell   Acoustic Guitar,12-string Guitar

Technical Credits

Barry Dean   Composer
Natalie Hemby   Composer
Jay Joyce   Composer,Producer,Engineer
Blair Daly   Composer
Lori McKenna   Composer
Shane McAnally   Composer
Mike Busbee   Composer
Jason Hall   Engineer
Karen Fairchild   Composer,Art Direction
Jimi Westbrook   Composer
Hillary Lindsey   Composer
Jedd Hughes   Composer,Contributor
Troy Verges   Composer
Ross Copperman   Composer
Jeremy Spillman   Composer
Phillip Sweet   Composer
Brent Cobb   Composer
Liz Rose   Composer
Kimberly Roads   Composer
Ryan Tyndell   Composer
Kelly Jarrell   Art Direction
Jason Saenz   Composer
Meritocracy   Art Direction

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