It seems after relentless touring, namely Europe and the US, Kip Moore has set aside time to write and deliver a new release, an EP titled ‘Underground’. From what appeared to be a rather turbulent year in 2015, surrounding the release of his sophomore album ‘Wild Ones’, where Moore suffered episodes of depression. Luckily for fans, it’s evident Moore is mentally in a better state and ready to continue where he left off.
Having been teased with the concept of a possible release since earlier this summer, it’s only in been recent weeks that we’ve had solid confirmation that we’ll see new material this October, courtesy of Moore’s Twitter & YouTube pages.
The initial releases were LP’s, so it may be difficult to fathom the reasons behind releasing an EP, Moore has stated it was more a “thank you gesture for the fans”. He also spoke about a full length album will be in the works for release spring 2017.
‘Underground’ is constructed of 5 tracks; 2 studio and 3 live. Both studio tracks have recently been leaked separately by Moore via his YouTube account.
It’s immediately apparent that stylistically there’s been a shift from the material featured on ‘Wild Ones’. Gritty ‘All Time Low’ lyrically is a heartache. A love song doused in a copious amount of whiskey coupled with a heavy dose of guitars, epitomising everything expected in a straight up rock song. “I’m in need of a jukebox and a sad, old country song” Given the past years’ issues surrounding mental health, there’s a sense of genuine catharsis in this track.
Country music is notorious for great songwriters, many which lend a helping hand in penning tracks for a multitude of artists. A unfortunate product of this is that these songs subsequently can appear a little two dimensional when vocalist’s sing lyrics that don’t ring true to themselves. Being a songwriter himself, you instantly believe every word spoken and its authenticity. Moore effortlessly declares “My kind’s rough, a little rough around the edges” following suit after an opening chugging riff, an introspective track, with a highly addictive chorus in the same vein as ‘Reckless’ (from ‘Up All Night’). Musically and lyrically it’s not overly complex by any means but regardless it ultimately achieves the goal of leaving a lasting taste, absolutely guaranteed to replay over and over in your head.
Rounding up the remaining 3 tracks on the EP is the live portion; they’re not newly penned tracks. However, they’ve never before been released, despite having been in setlists for several years. It’s an opportunity for fans to own official recordings of the tracks. Whether Moore had taken into account the stylistic makeup of the live tracks to give him a foundation to work on for the new studio tracks or not they fit perfectly, it’d be forgivable to think they were written in the same session. From the simplicity and linear structure of ‘My Baby’s Gone’ and ‘Separate Ways’ to the brief yet pumped up Springsteen esque ‘Midnight Slow Dance’ show Moore’s country rock roots and allow the magic of the raw performances to shine through.
‘Underground’ while a brief affair, offers up not just new/old, studio/live but also the prospect to see more sides to Moore; from the testosterone fuelled ‘My Kind’ to the vulnerable ‘All Time Low’ in addition to the remaining 3 tracks which tackle love and heartache.
‘Underground’ is another prime example showcasing Moores songwriting talent. It’s safe to say what Kip Moore does, he does exceptionally well, roll on 2017 for the full length album!