By Kurt Wolff
“It’s one of those songs [that] sounded like I could have written it.” Country artist Justin Moore is talking about when he first heard “Point at You,” his latest single, which has been all over country radio in recent weeks and is currently hovering in the Top 5.
The song is also the lead single from Moore’s third studio album Off the Beaten Path, which hit stores today (Sept. 17).
Told from the male point of view in a relationship, “Point at You” is a love song…of sorts. The guy in the song claims that he’s got “a wild side” that’s “at least a country mile wide.” However, if you want to see his “sweet,” “soft” and, as he puts it, “best side,” that’s where the title comes in: he simply points to his female partner.
During a recent interview, Moore told Radio.com that, prior to his chart-topping success with his previous No. 1. single, last year’s “Til My Last Day,” he may never have paid attention to “Point at You.” That’s because, as the Arkansas native admitted, before that point “I didn’t really do any love songs.” When he heard “Point at You,” though, it struck him as “a perfect extension” of “Til’ My Last Day.”
“I’m really careful about love songs and outside songs that I cut,” he explained. But “Point at You” passed the test. “I just thought this one was so me, that I was all about it. I try to find songs that are as real as possible. And all the things in this song I’ve done…or would do,” he continued, with a chuckle.
So when it comes to having both a “wild side” and a “soft side,” how does Moore himself balance those out in his music–and, specifically, on Off the Beaten Path?
“I think there are songs on this album that do both,” he answered. As an example, he mentions the song “That’s How I Know You Love Me.” He didn’t write it, but to him, “it’s one of the most truthful, straight-to-the-point songs about me and my wife’s relationship that I’ve ever heard. So I think that shows a bit of both.” He also describes the song as not only “probably my favorite song off the album,” but “probably my favorite song I’ve ever recorded.”
Off the Beaten Path shows a wide range of material across its 11 tracks (16 on the deluxe version). And to Moore, they all represent a part of who he is. “There’s funny songs on there, there’s beer drinking songs on there, there’s love songs on there, and depending on the day I’m one of those things. That’s why I love music in general–it can make you want to have a good time, it can make you cry, it can make you happy or sad. So the album as a whole represents where I’m at right now.”
Moore shows no hesitation when he calls Off the Beaten Path “definitely the most diverse album I’ve done.” But at the same time, he feels that fans will recognize a “continuity running through it” that connects with the sound, songs and lyrics found on his first two albums, which gave Moore such previous hits as “Back that Thing Up,” “Bait a Hook,” “Small Town USA” and “Til My Last Day.”
“The balancing act is trying to figure out how to stay true to who you are, and at the same time grow,” he explained. “And I think that we did that on this album.”
Off the Beaten Path Track Listing:
1. ‘Old Back in the New School’
2. ‘Lettin’ the Night Roll’
3. ‘Old Habits’ (featuring Miranda Lambert)
4. ‘Point at You’
5. ‘I’d Want It To Be Yours’
6. ‘This Kind of Town’
7. ‘Country Radio’
8. ‘That’s How I Know You Love Me’
9. ‘Off the Beaten Path’
10. ‘One Dirt Road’
11. ‘For Some Ol Redneck Reason’ (featuring Charlie Daniels)
Deluxe edition also includes:
2. ‘Big Ass Headache’
3. ‘Dirt Road Kid’
4. ‘Field Fulla Hillbillies’
Justin Moore’s Off the Beaten Path Tour, with Randy Houser and Josh Thompson, kicks off Nov. 1 in Springfield, Missouri and continues into the spring.