James and the Shame has ‘Nothing Left to Love’ in New EP
UPDATED: November 6, 2023
UPDATED: November 6, 2023

Album Release: November 3, 2023

Label: Recondite But Cordial Records

Good Mythical Morning

Rhett McLaughlin, well-known for his YouTube fame with Rhett and Link and their hit show, Good Mythical Morning, has another side to him as a musician…. A damn good musician. Under his alter ego and band, James and the Shame, he recently released an EP called Nothing Left to Love.  This EP, containing six tracks and spanning a total of 23 minutes, caught my attention and deserves an honorable mention.

Rhett and Link, who have been close friends since their college days, gained fame in the early 2000s through their comedy sketches and music videos on YouTube. Their popular show, Good Mythical Morning, has millions of subscribers and viewers, propelling them to stardom and leading to various other projects, including podcasts, a book, and television appearances. They are beloved for their humor, chemistry, and dedicated fan base.

James and the Shame

James and the Shame is Rhett McLaughlin’s solo project, which emerged in 2022 with the album Human Overboard, featuring the hit single Where We’re Going. This song is a beautifully written love note to Rhett’s wife, showcasing his songwriting talent. While Rhett’s comedic persona on YouTube might lead some to dismiss his musical abilities, it’s clear from his debut album and the EP, Nothing Left to Love, that he has a lot to offer, as well as the writing chops to back it up. 

Nothing Left to Love features primarily somber songs with primarily somber arrangements, love-themed lyrics, and self-help ballads, creating a perfect country music recipe. Drayton Farley would be proud, as McLaughlin does his best while keeping country music sad. The EP’s sonic landscape is reminiscent of 80s and early 90s country, with the inclusion of prominent pedal steel slide guitar and heavy electric bass, all complemented by Rhett’s surprising vocal talent. Perhaps it’s because they’re essentially twins, but I get a real heavy Ronnie Dunn vibe.

All six tracks on the EP are cleverly written and well-produced, enhancing the overall listening experience. Rhett’s songwriting skills are on full display, delivering emotionally provocative and thoughtful lyrics that put many Top 40 country songs to shame. Small Man, for instance, is a poignant southern ballad that reflects on Rhett’s unsavory grandfather, seen through the lens of adulthood, and it strikes a chord with anyone who has had a complicated family history or a shitty grandpa.

Final Thoughts

It would be a damn SHAME to miss Nothing Left to Love.

In conclusion, Nothing Left to Love by James and the Shame is a must-listen for those who may initially associate Rhett McLaughlin solely with his YouTube persona. This EP showcases Rhett’s remarkable musical abilities, offering well-crafted country songs that crack open a can of life’s hardships, truths, and stories. It’s an album that will truly captivate you and make re-evaluate what you thought about the beloved Youtube taste tester. So, next time someone asks, “You mean that guy from YouTube?” – you can confidently introduce them to Rhett McLaughlin’s impressive musical side. 

You may also be interested in Billy Bob Thorton’s Angelina

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