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Lady Antebellum Should Probably ‘Borrow’ Justin Timberlake’s Horn Section Indefinitely

For Lady Antebellum, horns make everything better. The trio took their catalog of hits to the next level on Thursday night (Aug. 3) at WE Fest, finding jolts of electricity that sent shockwaves through the crowd.

The trio’s set in Detroit Lakes, Minn., featured the songs you’d expect plus select cuts from their new Heart Break album. The title track was an early highlight, with Charles Kelley’s “Ooh-oo-oohs” at the end rolling out toward the newly-installed WE Bar at the back of general admission. “Compass” was next. The song was a sturdy Lady A selection that was quickly overshadowed.

It’s fair to ask: why has “We Owned the Night” not always benefitted from a horn section? The group confirmed that their new trombone and trumpet player were on loan from Justin Timberlake, but no country-loving judge in the land would prosecute them for horn thievery. Kelley’s energy and interaction with the front rows of his audience were felt in the last line of general admission. The crowd screamed the chorus back to them.

Ok, it’s cliche, but this is the Lady Antebellum we were hoping would return after a one-year hiatus!

“American Honey” came next, and while beautiful, it was poorly placed in a set that was peaking. Kelley’s tribute to Gregg Allman encored his CMT Awards performance of “Midnight Rider” with Jason Aldean. A cover of Shania Twain‘s “You’re Still the One” came during the lovers portion of the concert, when hands get slipped in back pockets and a few couples decide to slip away for campground romance.

“Bartender” and “Need You Now” formed the encore, but the highlight came when first Brett Young and then Kelsea Ballerini returned to the stage. Both played WE Fest earlier on Thursday, and both are currently on Lady Antebellum’s You Look Good Tour. Young and Kelley teamed for a cover of Tim McGraw‘s “Something Like That” before Ballerini and Hillary Scott sang a cover of Beyonce‘s “Crazy in Love” that could have, and maybe should have, closed the show. Who else joined in for this explosive cover of a great pop song?

That horn section!

The duo mimicked the melody as the two female singers worked to pop the cork off a bottle of lighting. Ultimately, they succeeded. Yes, Lady Antebellum are truly back.

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