Yesterday the reigning "American Idol" Phillip Phillips released his highly anticipated album, The World From The Side Of The Moon. Please, do not let the reality show title influence you. It's clear after one listen that he's much more of a musician than a product of a reality show. I love this guy's sound.
His first single, Home, has been hugely successful. It debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in June after his Idol victory, slipped a little for a few weeks, and then vaulted to new life during the Summer Olympics. You may have recognized it as it accompanied coverage of the United States women's gymnastics team. That certainly helped with his exposure.
And now the album picks right up where Home left off. I was very pleased to learn he wrote or co-wrote all of the songs except two. His cover of Chris Isaak's Wicked Game is nothing short of genius. The twists and turns will sound very familiar to you if you followed him on Idol. Gone, Gone, Gone will remind you of Mumford and Sons, from the guitar intro to the staccato drums, and get your feet tapping. So Easy is a beautiful love ballad with a catchy chorus "you make it so.. you make it so.. you make it so easy. / Just letting go.. so beautiful.. 'cause you make it so easy to fall so hard." Another stand out track that could easily be released as a single is Get Up Get Down. True to its title, it has a jumping chorus full of horns and hopping drums. In the powerful Tell Me A Story he pleads while singing... "Scared of what's behind you and scared of what's in front / Live with what you have now and make the best of what's to come." It's probably my favorite song by lyrics and melody.
If Dave Matthews and Marcus Mumford could have a love child, it would be Phillip Phillips. He gives a young and fresh look to the jamming-blues-rock hybrid. This album really showcases his rich, raspy vocals and mad guitar skills. I think we'll be hearing Phillip Phillips on the air waves for many years to come.