Corey Kent: ‘Blacktop – Album Review
Corey Kent releases his newest album, Blacktop out now, June 2nd on all streaming platforms. Listen to the brand-new project here.
Country newcomer Corey Kent is ready to establish himself as a force in country music. Today, the Sony Music Nashville newcomer released his major-label debut project, Blacktop, featuring the Platinum #1 hit, “Wild as Her.” Produced by music royalty, Jay Joyce, the album features a collection of ten new songs, eight of which were co-written by Kent.
The album’s name holds a double meaning for Kent, who has pounded the pavement as a touring artist for years before achieving success, while he also picked up work at a pavement company after a publishing deal fell through. “I think my path has been so winding to get here, that if this would’ve happened five years ago, I wouldn’t have had the ability to appreciate it like I do now,” He reveals.
Throughout Blacktop, Kent focuses heavily on sounding uniquely himself, adhering to the mantra that “Nobody great ever sounded like anyone else.” It’s that attitude that has earned him a loyal following, as he’s always remained true to himself. That included leaving Nashville because it didn’t feel quite right and setting his roots in Texas, an influence which can be heard throughout the LP.
“We sound like us because that’s never happened before, and that’s what I feel like this record is,” the Oklahoma native reveals of the album that is punctuated by tracks like “Wild As Her,” “Something’s Gonna Kill Me,” “Man of the House,” and “Once or Twice.”
While “Wild as Her” was Kent’s first foray into chart stardom, “Something’s Gonna Kill Me” is an immediate standout, a driving and radio-ready anthemic ode to seizing the day. Here, Kent proclaims, “Ain’t no way around it // One day I’m gonna die // If something’s gonna kill me might as well be // What makes me feel alive.”
“Life is not just surviving. It’s about creating experiences and feeling a rush and being exhilarated and making those memories you can’t ever forget,” He says of the song. “This record took me from working at a pavement company to being on the road full-time, and having one of the biggest songs of the year. It changed my life. I got kicked in the teeth by life, but I got up, spit out the blood and kept going. And now here we are.”
Similarly, “How You Know You Made It” and “Hood of That Car” both have that radio-ready anthemic feel, hooky choruses and feelgood melodies that are sure to continue Kent’s rise to superstardom. While “How You Know” celebrates the simple moments that mean success to Kent, “Hood” is a celebration of fooling around and falling in love on the hood of a car.
Likewise, “Bic Flame” is another heartfelt celebration of the simpler times, Kent realizing that despite his young age, he’s an old soul at heart. “You say I’m an old soul, But what’s so wrong with that?” He asks, musing “In a crowd full of cell phone lights, I guess I’m still a BiC flame guy.”
There’s love lost on tracks like “Gone As You” and “Long Story Short,” with the former finding him “gone” thanks to a bottle, while the latter finds him placing blame on the woman who cut their relationship a bit too short too soon. “You turned off the song right before that last chorus played,” he croons, voice laced with emotion on the catchy guitar-laden track. “Guess you and I just weren’t on the same page.”
“Man of the House” also shows Kent’s softer side, finding him at his most vulnerable as he tries to fill the shoes left behind by his father. On the stirring ballad, he struggles with the shadows of his past as well as how those things still affect him today. “Be strong when you ain’t// And hold on when you can’t // They can’t tell you but they need you // And you can’t let ‘em down // So hide those shakin’ hands // Be a rock when you feel like sand // It turns out all I was back then // Is all that I am now // Just a boy trying to be the man of the house.”
The album’s final track, “Once or Twice” closes out the album with a poignant touch, finding the singer-songwriter facing his demons. His voice is on full display over the lush ballad, his voice ripe with emotion. “I’ve never looked for trouble // But trouble’s found me all of my life // And there’s a time to walk away // And there’s a time to hold your ground and fight,” He declared. “I’ve never seen the face of God // But I’ve stared down the devil once or twice.”
It’s that kind of raw vulnerability mixed with catchy hooks that permeate Blacktop and are certain to establish Corey Kent as a future superstar in country music.
Country Swag Picks:
- Hood of That Car
- Something’s Gonna Kill Me
- Man of the House
- How You Know You Made It
- Wild as Her (Kelly Archer/Brett Tyler/Morgan Wallen)
- Long Story Short (Corey Kent/Lydia Vaughan)
- Something’s Gonna Kill Me (Corey Kent/Austin Goodloe/Joybeth Taylor/Lydia Vaughan)
- Man of the House (Corey Kent/Austin Goodloe/Joybeth Taylor/Lydia Vaughan)
- Gone as You (Casey Brown/Matthew McGinn/Travis Wood)
- BiC Flame (Corey Kent/Jack Hummel/Jon Sherwood)
- Call It a Night (Aaron Eshuis/Ryan Hurd)
- How You Know You Made It (Corey Kent/AJ Pruis/Smith Ahnquist)
- Hood of That Car (Corey Kent/Blake Chaffin/Jack Hummel/Jacob Lutz)
- Once or Twice (Corey Kent/Lee Miller)
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Kent is set to hit the stage as part of Jason Aldean’s Highway Desperado Tour this summer. For tour dates and more, visit Kent’s official website here.
To keep up with Corey Kent, follow him on Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.
Blacktop is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.