Tenille Townes – The Lemonade Stand (Columbia Nashville)

Looking to quench that country thirst?

Keen to drink in the summer…while it lasts?

Want a taste of the next big thing?

Well, The Lemonade Stand is as refreshing as its familiar title sounds.

Familiar? Kinda.

Townes’ Road To The Lemonade Stand EP pointed the way to this major label debut as far back as February.

And five of the six songs trailed earlier this year keep their place on a dreamy long player.

But it’s hardly a surprise.

For many, this 12-track masterclass will be a long overdue introduction to Townes.

It’s a first chance to convince the masses and stand out from the crowd.

So why wouldn’t The Lemonade Stand pull together the Nashville-based Canadian’s best work to date?

And judged in its entirety, it’s a truly brilliant body of work.

Opener Holding Out For The One speaks to anyone and everyone patiently awaiting the breakthrough of country music’s most exciting new talent.

The evocative Somebody’s Daughter – a dramatic live staple that’s going nowhere anytime soon – perfectly captures Townes’ endearing vulnerability.

And latest single The Most Beautiful Things is a tantalising treat best saved until last.

The Lemonade Stand is a shop window for Townes’ achingly authentic songwriting.

It’s a chance to buy into a name that’s been bubbling under since 2018’s critically acclaimed CMA songwriters’ tour of the UK.

And it’s a record that delivers on a decade of paying her dues.

Dizzying highlights come thick and fast.

And yet they never feel forced.

Jersey On The Wall (I’m Just Asking) stems from life-affirming personal experience.

It’s both passionate and powerful.

But Townes is a convincing storyteller in the finest tradition of classic country music and the tales she tells best are the truest.

Of course Jay Joyce deserves credit for capturing what could be a significant moment in time.

For Townes and country.

The Lemonade Stand would have collapsed under the weight of a roughshod production job.

Joyce would never let that happen.

In fact, this album’s strength is a structure that allows Townes room to breathe and that chance to convince.

From small Townes girl to Music City star?

It might read like a far-fetched tale rooted in fantasy.

But The Lemonade Stand could be the first great chapter in a very special story.

Main image by Matthew Berinato