Carrie Underwood’s fourth album era: Thoughts and tidbits

For Carrie Underwood fans, it’s been a fun week of promo for her fourth album, Blown Awaywhich came out this past Tuesday. The album is a healthy creative departure for Underwood – darker, more challenging and more thematically diverse than anything she’s released so far. I’m not sure if it’s the album I’ve been waiting for from her –the one that showcases a fully realized artist– but it’s a bigger step in this direction than I expected. I’m particularly excited about the commitment she shows to creativity and to finding new ways to sculpt her massive instrument.

It’s no surprise that my two favorite songs off of the album are nothing alike. The first is a gorgeous, desperate country ballad that, true to the genre, swirls together themes of alcohol and heartache. The second is a southern gospel-flavored tale of revenge and murder. Check out her performance of the latter at her IHeartRadio concert in New York City (at which she also killed her definitive “Idol” song, “Alone”):

But my favorite tidbit from this past week is related to a song from back in theCarnival Ride era. I’ve blogged before about why I’ve been able to connect with Underwood’s music on a personal level, but I always find it difficult to explain. Sometimes it’s easier to point to the things that touch me the most – like this:

Oh, and I can’t resist. Love this:

My husband calls me ‘the queen of awkward moments.’ If something can be said to make an awkward moment even worse, I’m going to say it.
Posted on May 6, 2012 and filed under American Idol, Music.