Luke Bryan, “Spring Break...Checkin’ Out”
After six recordings, eight increasingly well-attended free concerts on Panama Beach, and likely countless bad decisions and hangovers later, Luke Bryan is abdicating his throne as the king of spring break. Crowding 40 and having risen to country music's pinnacle with top honors from the ACM and CMA, it feels like the right time for the Georgia native to give up the wet T-shirt ghost. The seventh and final entry in the "Spring Break" series combines all six tracks from last year's "Spring Break . . . Like We Ain't Ever" with five fresh celebrations of white sand, blue skies, and debauchery, co-written by Bryan and a clutch of hit Nashville songwriters including Dallas Davidson and Ashley Gorley. The title track finds Bryan buying one more round for his loyal fans; "My Ol' Broncho," in accordance with current Nashville law, is a shiny ode to a rusty truck and the good times had therein. The strongest tracks are the greasy acoustic boogie of "Checkin' Out" and the emotional hangover of "You and the Beach," which finds a breakup lingering like a bad sunburn. (Out Tuesday)
ESSENTIAL "Checkin' Out"