In 2008, a 19-year-old David Adam Byrnes left Arkansas and headed to Music City, ready to follow his dreams and secure a career in the home of country music. Within his five years in Nashville, Byrnes he signed a publishing/record deal, released his debut single “Sweet Distraction,” which peaked at #62 on Billboard and Top 20 on Music Row, took part in Key West Songwriters Festival, and had a few songs lined up to be cut, only for things to not work out. Burnt out by legal ups and downs and the “bro-country” format that he had write songs for to appease the phase that’s taken root in Nashville, Brynes was ready to write what he wanted to write and in 2013 he got back on track, signing a record deal with Silverado Records. Another five years passed, and Brynes found himself in Fort Worth, TX, a city that was no stranger to the type of country music Byrnes was writing. Following the success of two singles (“Tequila Salt and Time” and “Beer Bucket List”), legal battles rose their head again, however as things settled this time around, the whole nation closed due to a worldwide pandemic. Just as his single “I Can Give You One” hit #1 on Texas radio, there were suddenly no honky-tonks to go play it in, but Byrnes didn’t let this unprecedented situation squash his creative juices or desire. On Friday, October 2, Byrnes released his latest and first independently released album Neon Town.
You won’t find any bro-country on Neon Town; the ten tracks ooze with classic country honky-tonkin’ music, just as Brynes intended all the long. From the first note of the title track “Neon Town” your ears are filled with country nostalgia of the 90s. Songs like “Neon Town” “Tequila Salt and Time” make you wanna get on the dance floor, kick-up your boots and get some line-dancing in. Tracks like the visual “Signs” mentally take you through the advertising paraphernalia and traffic stops of small towns and highways, especially for anyone who loves billboards, gas station logos and other insignias, even though the song has a much more somber story: pay attention to those in your life, before you lose them.
The other two previously released singles are also included on the album – “Beer Bucket List,” and I Can Give You One” – as well as his current single “Old School.” Setting the beat with guitar and picking, the song delivers advice that in order to impress a certain girl at the bar – one who has heard every cheesy pick up line under the sun – you have to go back to the old ways of flirting: making her smile and being a gentleman. With this deep twang, Byrnes shows he knows what he’s talking about, invoking the name of one of country’s most well known gentelmen:
If you wanna talk to her well you better have something to say
Something sweet that will make her smile
If you can’t no way she’ll remember your name
There ain’t a pick up line out there that she ain’t heard
From a guy wearing jeans just as tight as hers
To get a girl like that you’re gonna have to step up your game
And throw it on back with some old school moves
I’m talking Conway smooth …
Check out the official “Old School” music video, which premiered on CMT.com
Like any good country record, among the fun and rowdy tracks are serious ballads. “In My Arms” declares Byrnes’ never-ending love for his woman and wishing time would stand still, but for however long in this life that he can control, he will always hold her in his arms. In “She Only Wanted Flowers,” all the material gifts given over the years meant nothing as all she ever wanted was more simple showings of his love for her, like a bouquet of flowers.
The album ends with the traditional bluegrass tune “Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Loud Music.” This track shows Byrnes’ vocal range the best of all while the chorus’ harmonies are phenomenal, supported simply by a strumming guitar. It’s 4:14 of raw, true emotion and talent – symbolic of Brynes himself and his desire to get to this place in his career – and the proper song to end the album with.
Neon Town is available for download and streaming here.
For more information on David Adam Brynes, visit his website at www.davidadambyrnes.com and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Neon Town Track List:
1. Neon Town
2. I Can Give You One
3. She Only Wanted Flowers
4. Old School
6. Tequila Salt and Time
7. Beer Bucket List
8. In My Arms
9. I Ain’t Seen It Yet
10. Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Loud Music