Review: Kenny Chesney's 'Welcome to the Fishbowl'

Kenny Chesney releases his new album, "Welcome to the Fishbowl," on June 19.

Story highlights

  • Kenny Chesney's next album, 'Welcome to the Fishbowl,' will be released on June 19
  • The emotion on this album is uniquely overwrought
  • If Chesney hoped to give insight into his own life with this album, he missed the mark

Someone get Kenny Chesney back to his beachside hammock and reconnect his piña colada IV, stat!

Lately the sun-loving country titan has been more inclined to take moody nighttime strolls along the shore, and if his 13th album is any indication, the guy's got a lot to feel down about.

''I don't think I can take this bed getting any colder,'' he laments on aching opener ''Come Over.'' And on the Alzheimer's tale ''While He Still Knows Who I Am,'' a son watches as his father fades away.

Chesney's albums have always been considerably more wistful than his radio persona, but "Welcome to the Fishbowl's" tunes, while well wrought, can be downright dour. The tonal shift is fine — the problem is that these weepies often come off less like authentic autobiography than downbeat Nashville role-playing. (The too-sleek production and ponderous, stretched-out tempos don't help.)

Chesney channels 'Hemingway' on album
Chesney channels 'Hemingway' on album


    Chesney channels 'Hemingway' on album


Chesney channels 'Hemingway' on album 02:04

On the title track, a playful Internet-era rebuke, he muses, ''Everybody's business is everybody's business,'' but Fishbowl reveals less about the star's true interior life than ever.

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