With the Ripcord era, Keith Urban has descended into straight up pop music. He’s always had a pop influence in his songs, but there’s always some kind of country element present. That’s now gone for the most part. I reviewed Ripcord last year to shine light on how bad music is bad music no matter what genre you put it in. His newest single “The Fighter” is the most shining example on the album. Obviously not country from the first seconds of the song, we get obnoxiously loud synth and drum loops making me think I’ve found a wormhole back to the 80s. That’s immediately the first impression I get from this song: bad 80s music. The lyrics of this song are somehow more ridiculous. We get the unbelievable premise of Urban being the man who fights for his woman, an image I don’t think I’ve ever thought of when it comes to Urban. Carrie Underwood joins in on the song as the woman of this man’s desire he saves from her scares and problems. Again ridiculous because I see Underwood as a strong woman capable of holding her own without the help of Urban of all people. Underwood’s contribution are also pretty damn scant, as she sings the same three lines for most of the song before a couple of verses in the bridge. After thinking about it more, this song reminds me of another terrible song: Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger.” Just like this song, it has an impossible to believe premise (Adam Levine having the moves like Jagger), a really cheap beat and a strong vocalist barely showing up (Christina Aguilera). The only things I would give “The Fighter” over “Moves Like Jagger” is that it’s more catchy and has a better hook. But this doesn’t save this terrible song. When you have a country song that’s closer to bad 80s music and Maroon 5, you know you’ve got something truly horrendous.
Grade: As a country song, 0/10. As a pop song, 2/10
Recommend? – No way!
Written & Produced by Keith Urban and busbee