Simply, don't listen to this if you have no interest in country music.
As someone who has found a new love for the collectivist themes of southern culture and country music, this was released at a great time for me. A lot of solid, fit-for-the-radio, country-pop tunes. I think this is another Roddy Ricch situation. All ropes were tied, it just isn't crazy inventive, it's like the best of genericism. Morgan got his start on The Voice in 2014 and has been at it ever since. Spotify promoted the fuck out of this record which will probably earn him a lot of streams for the length, remind me of the Scorpion by Drake situation. he even charted #3 on Spotify for one of the best songs on the record. I think you have to want to like it and I most certainly do.
The production consists of country, specifically country-pop, elements. There are still quite a few tracks that have a heavier emphasis on drums, mimicking drum machine trap beats. I love the sounds mixed, trap country, as generic as the sound may be. Lots of common acoustic guitars strum and plucks. I do appreciate how often I hear the instruments soaked in a bit of reverb, lots of guitars and drums and even pianos can illuminate quite a bit. I don't know where my country appreciation comes from fully but this record is very warm and welcoming. It sticks to a structure and runs super lengthy.
Whilst listening I got sidetracked and had a thought, just wondering if anyone feels the same way or the opposite way even. The U.S can be divided so easily by regional cultures. Coming from a rich area of the northeast, probably the largest example I can explain, the south and the north are so different culturally. The dixie culture of the south revolves around trucks and bikes and hunting and so much other yee yee ass shit. Sometimes I forget the world doesn't revolve around white suburban TikTok. I guess that's something I learned in 2020. Back to the album though.
Lyrically I can't relate to about half of the content given. I think I relate a bit more than I would've if the lyrics were more country just because of love related lyricism. Of course, there are the discussions about whiskey, trucks, guitars, and literally everything else country but fused with it is the love aspects that make me connect just a bit more than I would've without. Of course, complimenting lyricism is his voice, he has a pretty decent and memorable voice for country music. Some great moments, never really dull vocally. His range could've been presented better but this is one of his first so I can let it slide.
This shit was a lot longer than it needs to be. A double album is not something I'm fond of but 15 tracks on both sides is just fucking absurd. Morgan is lucky I liked it enough to listen to both, I would not give any 30 track album this much praise if it didn't impress me enough. I think I definitely prefer the first side of the album but the second side is still excellent as well.
My favorite tracks breakdown... Sand in My Boots is a good intro for instrumentation. Somebody's Problem is really cute and his vocal performance is super addicting. 865 is pretty catchy. Warning is a bit darker and I love it for the slight grime he gave it. 7 Summers is engrained in my head because of TikTok but rightfully so, it's pretty uplifting. Rednecks, Red Letters, Red Dirt has a really nice gravitational chord progression, flows so well. Somethin' Country has a really cool fast flow in the chorus and I am trying to memorize it.
The first side starts super strong and fizzles out in the final stretch. The second side is just inconsistent and possibly more personal yet I found it harder to relate to. A solid record that I see myself coming back to a bit. Give it a try if you have any interest in country music.