Much like his excellent 2014 debut album, “Write You A Song”, did with “What I Can’t Put Down”, “The B-Sides” chooses to open up with a song about regret and how Pardi has to pay for it. “Fightin’ The Fool” is one of the standouts of the record, as it is ridicuolusy catchy, while at the same time sporting a well written song with some very country instrumentation. “Over My Head” continues along with a bluesy swagger accompanying the track. In this song, Pardi talks about a woman who’s hard to read, yet he knows that whatever her command, he’ll be under her spell. “Drinkin’ With Me” is the spot on the EP where Pardi lets the fun rip. Its a really fun,country song that shouldn’t be overlooked just because its not as lyrically strong as the other songs. The fun continues on “Back On The Backroads”. This is a song that some might argue is a “bro-country” song, however I’d have to disagree. The song is meant to be fun, and has plenty of fiddle and steel guitar to remind the listener that Pardi wants to be different from his male counterparts. After two songs of regret, and two songs of fun, we finally reach the last two – the sad songs. “Rainy Night Song” talks of Pardi wishing that he had his lover to enjoy the rainy night with him, as he used to protect her from the storm. Its a quieter moment on the EP that is a welcome change of pace. The final track, “Borrowed Time”, is arguably the best track of the 6. In here, Pardi talks about how we shouldn’t take life for granted and to appreciate all we have because, after all, we’re all just down here living on borrowed time. While the theme of the song itself is a highlight, the song also exhibits Pardi’s vocals very strongly, a strength that was seemingly absent from his debut.
Overall, what sets Jon Pardi apart from the rest of his peers is his use of strong country instrumentation and the fact that he knows who he is and is trying to make the music he believes in. “The B-Sides” is definitely a nice thing to have while waiting for Jon’s second album.
Standout Tracks: “Fightin’ The Fool”, “Over My Head”, “Rainy Night Song”, “Borrowed Time”