Ridley Bent Ridley Bent

Somewhere in Nova Scotia there must have been two radios tuned to Sheryl Crowe's "All I Wanna Do” and Sugar Ray's "Fly” with Ridley Bent's ears stuck between them. At least that's the impression you get from listening to hick-pop Bent's debut disc. The summery vibes and faux rapping sink this disc from the outset, not because of poor production or even bad performances, but because the entire premise it's built on ends up sounding laughable. Bent’s attempts to present us with hard-edged stories of street life in a nondescript Southern U.S. accent really sound more cartoonish than anything. And even that wouldn't be so bad if Bent had anything original to say. But instead of capitalising on some new country-rap craze with intelligent lyrics, the best he can muster is tired American-centric songs about his Lexus, Hollywood Boulevard, getting high and being horny. Hmm, how original. Buck 65 already did the folk-urban thing way better and gave us something uniquely Canadian to boot. All that's left is that when Bent sings "All I wanna do/ Is get drunk with you," you'll find yourself instead finishing his first line with "Is have some fun / I got a feeling I'm not the only one." And that's really the last thing I need in my head. (MapleMusic)