Like so many country singers from the Music City, Kip Moore got started as a songwriter, penning tunes for the duo Thompson Square. Moore displays a certain commercial savvy throughout his 2012 debut, Up All Night, sculpting his tunes with care, polishing them until they gleam, writing about all the things country boys love -- faith, pretty girls, beer money, and partying -- throwing them all together in his hit single "Somethin' 'Bout a Truck," a song that could happily double as an advertisement for either beer or trucks. That kind of commercialism is alternately alienating and alluring: the machinations behind the music are so transparent that it's a bit off-putting, yet the album is executed so well it can nevertheless suck you in against your will. It's big and bright, shameless in its attempt to win you over, and -- given increased exposure -- that eager-to-please nature winds up ingratiating whether you like it or not.
Up All Night Review
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine