April 24, 2012 – breakout artist Kip Moore released his debut album ‘Up All Night’, a fabulous introduction to a truly unique artist whose gritty, passionate vocals and rock-infused twist on country music firmly established Kip as one of the biggest new talents within the genre.
‘Up All Night’ produced the #1 single, ‘Somethin’ ‘Bout a Truck’ followed by successive top 10 hits, ‘Beer Money’ and ‘Hey Pretty Girl’, a selection of tracks which truly showcase Kip’s incredible versatility and his ability to compete with the more established icons of the genre.
Three years on, Kip Moore is back with a brand new project, ‘Wild Ones’. Following the success of ‘Up All Night’, Kip released two singles which were planned to feature on the sophomore album, ‘Young Love’ which charted at #24 and ‘Dirt Road’ which failed to chart in the top 40, an immensely unfair reflection on the quality of both tracks. Following the disappointing performance of these singles, Kip decided to scrap the project and re-write the whole album from scratch, resulting in the production of ‘Wild Ones’ which Kip feels “encompasses everything I’ve felt over the past couple of years and embodies everything we are as a band”. The final product is a truly stunning work of art, which maintains Kip’s rock-influenced approach, whilst also exposing a more emotional, heart-felt adaptation of Kip’s songwriting.
I have been fortunate enough to see Kip twice this year, including his performance at C2C in London which sent shockwaves through the UK country audience at the O2 Arena. As an opener, the expectation levels perhaps didn’t match those of the headline acts, however Kip certainly made his mark and made the stage his own, leaving many C2C fans who may not have been familiar with Kip totally stunned by the sheer energy of his set, similar to the impact made by Dierks Bentley at C2C 2014. On both occasions I have watched Kip, he has opened with the title track, ‘Wild Ones’, a track which encapsulates the perfect blend of rock and country, a combination which is prevalent throughout the new album. The track adopts an anthemic chorus which lends itself beautifully to Kip’s live show, and the punchy bass instantly grabs attention and conveys the passion of the album in spectacular fashion.
Another stand-out moment is provided with ‘Heart’s Desire’, Kip’s personal favourite on the album and one which represents the patience and immense effort put into the project. The song took a number of months for Kip to construct as 4 sets of lyrics were written before Kip finally had the lyrics to convey the passion and emotion that the melody evoked. “I’m going to try and paint a picture to make you see it, to truly visualize something when you hear that song”. The final product succeeds with flying colours, taking the listener on an emotional journey of a man struggling to recover from a lost lover. “Night’s falling on me like a big black coat/Staring through a window at the empty cold/Thick white smoke rolling off my lips.”… ‘Heart’s Desire’ is a real lesson in songwriting, as Kip uses the song as a canvas to paint a picture of emotions, whilst also creating the anthemic-style chorus which Kip’s fans have come to know and love.
My personal favourite is the final track on the album, ‘Comeback Kid’, which serves a welcome relief to the powerful energy of the album and completes the production with a heart-felt, personal story which is sure to resonate with a very wide audience. In many ways, the stripped-down style of the track is similar to the smash hit ‘Hey Pretty Girl’, as the simplistic yet beautiful melody draws the listener in, and despite having a less powerful approach than the rest of the album, Kip’s gritty, passionate delivery of the song ensures that the emotional message of the song is conveyed just as successfully.
‘Wild Ones’ is truly one of the most stunning albums I have had the pleasure of hearing, and although Kip’s very unique, raspy voice may not be everybody’s cup of tea, I would urge any country music fan to give it a try. From the anthemic ‘Wild Ones’ to the foot-tapping tune ‘What Ya Got On Tonight’ to the wonderfully simplistic ‘Comeback Kid’, this album provides something for everybody. In my opinion, this should be a contender for Album of the Year in the forthcoming country awards shows, and Kip deserves every success with this album. I spoke to Kip in California and he informed me of his plan to tour the UK early next year (not yet confirmed), and I cannot wait to experience ‘Wild Ones’ as a live show once again – a place where the album really shines.
- That Was Us
- Hearts Desire
- Running For You
- Comeback Kid