This week, A Rocket To The Moon (Nick Santino, Justin Richards, Eric Halvorsen, and Andrew Cook) follow up their 2009 record, On Your Side, with their new release, Wild & Free.
The band teamed up with producer Mark Bright (Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban) on their new record and channeled their classic rock and country music influences, from The Eagles and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers to Johnny Cash and Brad Paisley.
“We wanted that good ol’ rock-n-roll feel, almost that southern rock vibe to this album,” lead singer Nick Santino shared with me during an interview last fall.
From what my ears can tell, they definitely accomplished their goal.
Sonically, Wild & Free is a bit of a departure from On Your Side. Hopefully fans of the band will notice and appreciate the seemingly natural and genuine progression of their sound and maturity in their songwriting. Plus, vocally, Santino just knocks it out of the park.
With their anthemic title track and fun-loving sing-a-longs, “Going Out” and “Whole Lotta You,” A Rocket To The Moon pulls from their various influences for some solid folk/pop-rock fun. On their swoon-worthy and nostalgic love song, “First Kiss,” the band incorporated some country flavor.
Lyrically, the band’s latest single, “Ever Enough,” a heart-wrenching ballad about devotion, and the closing track, the piano-driven “Lost and Found,” are easily two of the most emotionally gripping songs to be found on Wild & Free. The honesty and vulnerability found in the lyrics hit you in such a way that you can’t help but to hang on to every word.
Personally, I really enjoy “You’re My Song.” I think the song is a real sweet spot among the 13 tracks on this record. I like the overall energy of the track, and I can’t help but smile at the line, “You’re a little bit country, yeah, and I play rock-n-roll.” Even though it is the second-to-last track on the record, I feel like it really packs a punch that leaves a lasting impression of how much ARTTM has evolved with their sound.
A Rocket To The Moon’s new record, Wild & Free, is available now.
For more information on the band, please check out their official website.
Photo credit: Fueled By Ramen Records