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Morgan Evans

Things That We Drink To – 2018 (Warner)

Reviewed by Michael Rampa

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CDs by Morgan Evans

Morgan Evans' U.S. debut a matter of personal preference. It straddles the line between repetitious and tedious. If you like radio friendly, cliched three-minute singles, then this half hour is for you. He is clearly following the formula that powered his international single," Kiss Somebody" to number one in the U.S. 2017 was a busy year for Evans between moving to the U.S. from Australia and marrying Kelsea Ballerini. She serves as his muse on several of the songs, clearly on the opener, "American."
"she's got hair as gold as Kansas Wheat, her body moves like bourbon street in New Orleans, so wild and free/She's American, making my life better than it's ever been."

Sonically, the collection is reminiscent of early Keith Urban, one of the fellow Aussie's' main influences, and Evans is a capable enough guitar player.

Ballerini joins him on a pleasant "Dance With Me." It is followed by the much more intense title track; a deep, reflective song that was inspired in part by the sudden death of his friend and manager Rob Potts, who was killed in a motorcycle accident in 2017.

Evans co-penned each track alongside producer Chris DeStefano. Admirably, the two also played every instrument. The obligatory drinking song "Day Drunk" has a cool looped rhythm, but the lyrics are boring ("Let's get a little day drunk, party with our shades on" and the chorus feels exceptionally long. "Kiss Somebody" is essentially this album's wheelhouse, a glossy, pop culture effort tailor-made effort to fuel Evans' momentum instead of breaking any new ground.