After winning American Idol this summer, his debut single ‘Home’ was number one on the charts and possibly the biggest debut song to come out of any Idol winner. Will Phillip Phillips continue to be the next big star to come out of Idol, or will his first album get forgotten along with so many other past winners?
The much-awaited album, ‘The World From the Side of the Moon’ was released under producer Gregg Wattenberg who has previously worked with Train and O.A.R.
What I first noticed after downloading this album is that, for the most part, it is absolutely nothing like his first single. The style is much more folk and rock based while incorporating the pop, feel-good style seen in the single in a few songs.
The first song ‘Wicked Game’ starts the album with a much darker, slower pace than I had expected. His voice and tone has been compared to Dave Matthews Band with songs like ‘Man on the Moon.’ However, he keeps his sound original with more pop-infused songs thrown in like, ‘Can’t Go Wrong’, ‘So Easy’ and ‘Gone, Gone, Gone.’
Critics agree that he has shown more potential than most past Idol winners and note his positive movement away from being just another pop artist. ‘Gone, Gone, Gone’ is the most similar to ‘Home’ and will probably be the next big hit, especially after he performs it on the Today show in the USA.
He has received more praise for tracks similar to those that make use of his ballad choruses that really attract listeners. These catchy songs will definitely make for a great live show when he begins his tour.
While he is obviously one of the best and most successful artists to come out of American Idol since Kelly Clarkson, some songs seem a bit redundant and too similar to current bands like Arcade Fire.
Overall, fans that have followed Phillips from the beginning are pleased by the album as a whole and feel that it stays true to the style they saw him develop throughout the show.
The real challenge will be his next album. His unchanging vocals can be seen as a real limitation especially with this style of music, so it will be interesting to see where he goes from here.