NYCS First Impression: Cassadee Pope ‘Rise and Shine’

Rise and Shine Cassadee Pope

As fast as it started, summer is slowly winding down. Soon enough, the days will get shorter and the weather colder. Today, August 6th, Cassadee Pope released her third studio album, the acoustic Rise and Shine and it’s the perfect soundtrack to transition you into fall. It’s warm, nostalgic, and exciting. There’s a song for every season and feeling.

The first track, “Let Me Go”, and the final, “Built This House”, were the first of the eight to be released. “Let Me Go,” tells the story of a relationship that has run it’s course, while “Built This House” is more of a reflection of once you’re on the other side of the breakup. “Counting on the Weather”, written by the artist along with Bobby Huff, and Blair Daly is the most classic Pope, rhythmically and lyrically. It’s incredibly distinct, and it sounds like it was made for a late Indian Summer night.

A project like this is a reminder of why Pope won NBC’s The Voice all those years ago. Not only is she a true artist with a vision, but she has one of the most spectacular and versatile voices in all of country music. This is showcased on the entire album, but especially on moments like “Hangover” and “Hoodie”. Both are early-2000s sounding and reminiscent of her alternative roots.

“Rise and Shine is a collection of songs that talk about where I’ve been and where I’m headed,” says Pope in a statement. “I wanted people to hear these in their purest form so I went with a more stripped back sound that really lets the lyrics stand out. My hope is that these songs help aid people into feeling every emotion they need to let out.”

The standout on the record is “California Dreaming”, which she sings with boyfriend and fellow singer-songwriter/actor Sam Palladio. It starts with a gorgeous, pensive guitar and builds as soon as Pope’s voice comes in. When Palladio joins her at the chorus, they soar together, and it is bound to give you goosebumps. It’s nostalgic and really thoughtful. “I’ve been flying and crying, trying to leave you where I’ve been/But the cracks in my heart always let you back in/Keep trying to lose you in the Hollywood Hills/but I’m California dreaming still”, they sing on the chorus. The guitar is melodic but doesn’t overpower their vocals. It sounds like it could be straight off the show Nashville, while still sounding retro.

The title track, “Rise and Shine” is soothing in every way; it’s perfect for the times we’re living in now. Written by Pope, Danny Orton, Matt Scannell is the beautifully serene song about getting up every morning and choosing to fight for yourself and your worth. It sounds like waking up early in the morning and seeing the sunshine through the blinds.

Modern country music has become more produced over the years, so it’s refreshing to see an artist as successful as Cassadee Pope step back and let the lyrics and her voice do the talking. Right now what we need most is music and art to transport us, and this album does that successfully. As Cassadee sings, “you know it’s always darkest before the dawn, so rise and shine”.

Rise and Shine Track Listing:
Let Me Go (Cassadee Pope, Tina Parol, Kevin Rudolph)
Hoodie (Cassadee Pope, Johan Fransson, Emily Weisband)
California Dreaming (Cassadee Pope, Alex Kline, Shane Stevens)
Counting On The Weather (Cassadee Pope, Bobby Huff, Blair Daly)
Hangover (Cassadee Pope, Butch Walker)
Rise and Shine (Cassadee Pope, Danny Orton, Matt Scannell)
Sand Paper (Cassadee Pope, Alex Kline, Shane Stevens)
Built This House (Cassadee Pope, Forest Glen Whitehead, Kelly Archer)

NYCS Picks:
California Dreaming
Counting On The Weather
Rise and Shine

To keep up with Cassadee Pope, follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

‘Rise and Shine’ is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music here on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.





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