Twice the Speed of Life
Fame and riches aren’t nearly as valuable as a parent’s love on “Baby Girl.” “Tennessee” and “Just Might (Make Me Believe)” identify long-term commitment as an essential part of romance. Other songs remain optimistic about life (“Time, Time, Time”) or encourage resilience amid darkness (“Stand Back Up”). Rather than be consumed by the daily grind, lead singer Jennifer Nettles decides there’s gotta be “Something More” than a stressful 9-to-5, and boldly decides to chart a new course. However ...
... there’s alcohol involved, and not all drudgeries should be jettisoned for a selfish adventure. For example, on “Down in Mississippi (Up to No Good)” a stressed-out housewife flees domestic strife to gamble all night with her girlfriends (mild profanities also pop up). “Just Might (Make Me Believe)” says, “I need a deep margarita to help me unwind.” “Hello” and “Speed of Life” reminisce about sex outside of marriage. The latter specifically excuses a teen girl’s need to be “wild and free.”
Sugarland honors parents and persistence. But the trio’s music also creates Southern discomfort. It winks at alcohol, gambling and premarital sex while romanticizing knee-jerk self-fulfillment that fails to count the cost.