The Compass Project - South Album

The Compass Project - South Album

While many country artists have adopted the double-album format in the early 2020s, Brett Kissel opts for an especially ambitious undertaking with The Compass Project, a four-installment series showcasing different sides of his artistry. “I came up with this name because my internal compass has guided me, obviously, my whole life,” Kissel tells Apple Music. “But I’ve really decided to dig deep into what your internal compass really is. And the reality is that I wear my heart on my sleeve all the time, so why not make an album—or what turned into four albums? Why not release all of this to explain to anybody who cares? If you do care, you’re going to get a lot of it. If you don’t care, that’s fine, just move on. But I’m releasing four albums that talk about the four aspects of my life.” On the South Album, the project’s first release, Kissel serves up straightforward, no-frills country music, though not without a few surprises. Perhaps the biggest of those is the inclusion of boy band 98° on hit single “Ain’t the Same,” with the group’s well-honed harmonies offering a lush backdrop for Kissel’s own vocals. Other highlights include the sweetly nostalgic “Never Have I Ever,” the cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Cadillac Ranch,” and the album’s emotional closer, “Line in the Sand,” on which Kissel outlines his personal values.

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