Sugarland has detailed its highly anticipated sixth studio album Bigger, available June 8th via a joint partnership between Big Machine Label Group and UMG Nashville. Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush co-wrote nearly all of the songs on the album, which was co-produced by Kristian, Jennifer, and Julian Raymond. The project’s lead single, “Still The Same,” is currently climbing the country radio charts ahead of the duo’s spring-summer Still The Same 2018 Tour.
After taking a hiatus to pursue a series of high profile solo projects, Bigger is the duo’s first new music in seven years and the first project under their new joint venture with Big Machine Records and UMG Nashville. It’s available to pre-order at digital retailers as well as the title track. Autographed copies are available via the duo’s website.
As fans have come to expect from Sugarland, Bigger embodies the musical spirit of the band: it contains tracks both uptempo and upbeat as well as powerful message songs that address specific issues facing the world. “Our hopefulness and our sparkiness and our joy is one of the things I think we do uniquely well, especially in the country format,” says Nettles of the set’s sunnier material. “We offer that in a unique way.”
Nettles and Bush co-wrote ten of the album’s eleven tracks. The remaining track, “Babe,” was written by Taylor Swift and Train’s Pat Monahan. Swift’s vocals are also featured “Babe.”
The bold graphics of the recently unveiled album cover conjure up images of a circus tent, representative of both that fun side and some of the more enigmatic content on the project, which was written over and influenced by the course of the past six months. “This album has a whole bunch of mystery,” says Bush, who has been enjoying peeling back the layers of the production and the nuanced songwriting. “I’m listening to it every two days just to see what’s in it. I have entire pints of blood in that thing, but I still don’t know where it all came from, and I love that.”
Recently featured on the cover of USA Today’s Life section, the duo will give fans a taste of the new material when they appear on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! May 2nd.
Their Still The Same 2018 Tour kicks off May 25th and will visit 48 cities in the U.S. and Canada, but the duo has already delighted audiences in the U.K. with their new material, earning standing ovations during their performances at the C2C: Country to Country festival in March.
Since the band’s inception in 2002, Sugarland has sold nearly ten million albums domestically, earned seven No. 1 singles to date and amassed more than 260 million on-demand streams, making Sugarland one of the most popular country music duos of all time.
Lauded by Entertainment Weekly as one of the format’s “most successful and beloved acts,” both members of the duo say their time away from writing and recording together has only made them come back stronger and, yes, Bigger.
“We have always enjoyed playing in the margins and stretching the format,” states Nettles. “But it’s fun to have taken this time away and seen how the format has expanded and how music has evolved. Before, we were playing in the margins. Now, the margins have moved, and that’s fun to hear.”
“It’s not like we stopped creating with [2010 album] The Incredible Machine,” adds Bush. “We kept going, but like a good Netflix show you skipped seasons three and four and now you’re seeing season five and you’re reminded of why you loved it. We didn’t really hit pause on anything. We both got on treadmills that were even faster in some ways. But we made a promise to come back, and we kept that promise.”
1. Bigger | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
2. On A Roll | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
3. Let Me Remind You | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
4. Mother | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
5. Still The Same | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
6. Lean It On Back | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
7. Babe (featuring Taylor Swift) | Taylor Swift, Pat Monahan
8. Bird In A Cage | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
9. Love Me Like I’m Leaving | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles, Tim Owens
10. Tuesday’s Broken | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
11. Not The Only | Kristian Bush, Jennifer Nettles
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.