EP REVIEW: Kip Moore – ‘Room To Spare: The Acoustic Sessions’

Kip always comes through on a promise… Die-hard fans asked for an acoustic album and behold; Room To Spare: The Acoustic Sessions.

With every release, he reminds me why I love music and what it means to me. He’s one of the few artists that hears what we want and delivers every single time. Has anyone ever wondered what it would be like to sit with Kip around a campfire with a bottle of the good stuff? Well, take a seat and crank this bad boy to 10!

Room To Spare is a collection of honest recordings, that I can only describe as some of his best work. Yes, we all say that about most things Kip produces, but he dang well knows what he is doing. If there is one man in the industry that knows how to relate to his audience, it’s Kip Moore.

Following the release of Slowheart last autumn, we’re out here begging for a new project and in the midst of another full album, Kip treats us to Room To Spare, just to keep us hanging on until another drop. Spring, did I hear rumours of? I mean I can wait… I’m not sure about y’all… but this will more than tide me over.

So, let’s talk The Acoustic Sessions

Does anyone else hear a body of work slightly reminiscent of Up All Night? It’s in there, little pieces here and there. I’m also getting much more of a campfire feel. It’s raw, emotional and not over-produced.

Room To Spare is light and yet emotional in all the right places. Some of the tracks on this record were written by Moore over a decade ago; he was just waiting for the right time to share them. I don’t think he could have picked a better time. Anyone who appreciates his craft, and the craft of real music, needs this album. Not only has he released unheard songs of his own, but Kip has also enlisted some of the most talented musicians and songwriters in Nashville for this venture.

Among those is Charlie Worsham. I have a deep love for Charlie regardless, but to hear that Love You to the Moon (co-written with Luke Dick and Natalie Hemby) was to be recorded and performed by Kip, I was dubious to say the least. I’d seen Charlie perform this live for the first time this summer at The Station in Nashville and immediately fell in love. I couldn’t wait to hear Charlie release it himself. To say Kip has done the track justice wouldn’t be enough. Such a simple, sweet story accompanied by light guitars, a catchy hook and Kip’s signature gravelly vocals… heaven.

Throughout the project, Kips vocals are both powerful, yet vulnerable and gives the sound of the whole record an innocence and honesty that we don’t often find.

Tennessee Boy is an anthem for sure, with its nostalgic story-telling and carefree vibe. If it doesn’t make radio’s top 10, I’m giving up on the industry! Part of Growing Up also basks in reminiscence, accepting life doesn’t always go to plan and embracing the changes.

The Tom Petty-inspired It Aint California is probably my second favourite on the album. More than just a heartfelt tribute to one of Moore’s biggest influences, the song is an ode to the man himself, including several references to some of his biggest hits.

Wish It Was Me– come on now, who doesn’t relate to this one?! A classic love story, with dreamy guitar picking. However, my favourite on the record has to be Come Home With You. It’s special. One of those songs that just hits you hard in the gut and it has earned its place in my top 3 Kip tracks.

Now, Plead The Fifth has become a crowd favourite during Kip’s high-octane live shows.  After seeing a completely stripped-back version for Paste Magazine at their studios in New York ahead of the Slowheart release, I kind of hoped that Kip would record it for this project exactly the same – just him and an acoustic guitar. It hits me hard every time I hear it that way. The underlying kick drum, shaker and tambourine are just enough to make this version a perfect fit for the vibe on Room To Spare.

Kip has most definitely hit the nail on the head with this project; no over production, and less is most definitely more. Simple and stunning, quality over quantity. I am literally at a loss for words – and that is definitely not like me!

Room To Spare is yet another classic contribution of Kip’s that reminds us all that he is a true artist at the top of his game. Unfortunately, he will forever be underrated and underappreciated by the industry. But his fans…

Well, we’re all out here keeping the fire burning Kip. You keep delivering and we’ll keep showing up. We got you!

Katie Hutchinson