Phillip Phillips' 'The World From the Side of the Moon': What the Critics Are Saying
'American Idol' on the Charts: Phillip Phillips' 'World' Keeps Getting Bigger
It's a big week for American Idol season 11 winner Phillip Phillips, whose debut album, The World From the Side of the Moon, was released on Monday via Interscope Records.
Marking the occassion: a flurry of TV appearances, including ABC's The View, Late Night with David Letterman and the American Music Awards, where the Leesburg, Georgia native rubbed shoulders with the likes of Justin Bieber.
“I saw the Biebster,” Phillips said of his AMA experience. “50 Cent walked by me, and Usher. I can’t believe I am breathing the same air as them.” And the star power didn't stop there -- after Phillips' Letterman appearance, he tweeted that he had spent a good part of the evening being chatted up by rock legend Pete Townsend.
As for his own career, Phillips is already off to a good start, with the lead-off single, “Home,” officially a radio smash, and in a truly you-have-arrived moment: as a mashup moment on the Thanksgiving episode of Glee airing Nov. 29.
Produced by Gregg Wattenberg, who previously worked with Train and O.A.R., Phillips channels his inner Dave Matthews on The World From the Side of the Moon with introspective tracks about relationships and aspirations. Among the highlights: songs like, “Gone, Gone, Gone, “Tell Me a Story” and the album opener “Man on the Moon.”
Critical reviews have been positive and mainly centered on Phillips “potential" in light of the "generic pop that these reality competitions sometimes spawn.”
Read below to see what music critics are saying about the album:
Gary Graff of Billboard compared Phillips' style and tone to Matthews', but also notes that the Idol champ, "Sounds natural enough within that style, more acolyte than imitator, which makes the album one of the more engaging champion debuts in the show's inconsistent history."
Emily Tan of Idolator writes: "Working with a slew of backup musicians to form a full and big sound, including brother-in-law and guitar teacher Ben Neil, some parts of the album unsurprisingly remind the listener of bands like Dave Matthews Band and Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. This should make for a fun and high energy live show when he takes the album on the road. Probably taking a tip from Mumford & Sons, 'Gone, Gone, Gone' has that 'jam band you can take with you to the pub for a couple beers' vibe, or perhaps it would fit as a bonfire singalong."
Glenn Gomboa of Newsday praises Phillips’ artistic side, commenting: “As his smash 'Home' has shown, Phillips can't really miss, and his debut offers more like that -- in the catchy 'So Easy' and 'Can't Go Wrong.' "