Reviewed by Margaret Moser, Fri., Sept. 2, 2011
Kevin FowlerChippin' Away
The sight of Kevin Fowler sitting on an old, plush couch on the cover of Chippin' Away is ample reminder that his generation of country music fans grew up on MTV and are likewise looking for a place to kick back and a little music to do it with. Fowler's everyman sincerity imbues each track with a kind of indefinable substance; his audience likely doesn't care about Fowler's critical assessment, but they like his songs about girls ("That Girl"), trucks ("Girl in a Truck"), and beer ("Hell Yeah, I Like Beer"). There's nothing as rip-roaring as past glories "Beer, Bait and Ammo" or as anthemic as "100% Texan," but this year's Fowler model is a family man, reflecting on a past of raising hell rather than going out and doing it himself ("Daddies and Daughters"). And if Fowler's not raising hell like he used to, that's okay. That audience is growing up, too.