genuine country and his best

John Michael Montgomery (Atlantic)
John Michael Montgomery

By Michael W. Stout

John Michael Montgomery's third Atlantic Records release, simply titled John Michael Montgomery, very easily could be his best effort yet. This Nicholasville, Ky., native can take any type of tune, whether it be the slow, romantic ballad "I Swear" or the fast-paced, rockabilly "Be My Baby Tonight," and make it sound like it was custom written just for him. This farm boy turned country megastar can rope in a country fan better than the best calf roper on the rodeo circuit handles little doggies.

This album offers up quite an array of some fine country love songs, including Montgomery's recent hit, "I Can Love You Like That," as well as "High School Heart" and "Long As I Love." Among the foot-stompers are "Cowboy Love" and "It's What I Am," in which Montgomery declares that "Country ain't what I sing, it's what I am."

"Sold (The Grundy County Auction Incident)" fits Montgomery to a T with its romantic plot set to a racing country beat. This one wraps the best of both country music worlds into one. John Michael Montgomery's genuine country roots are craftily translated into music.