Morgan Wade Is Finding Her Way Ahead of New Album “Psychopath”

When Morgan Wade very first appeared on the independent country scene, she had us all really excited. Here was an authentic songwriter from Floyd, Virginia playing earnest songs acoustically that could fill the void of women at the top of the independent country insurgency. She was the female version of Tyler Childers, we all surmised.

But when her debut album Reckless came out, it wasn’t exactly that. It wasn’t bad, but there were more rock and pop moments than what we had expected. It still went onto to be very well-received, and find a wide and appreciative audience, even if that audience only rubbed elbows with independent country as opposed to hitting the bulls-eye.

Maybe the problem wasn’t Morgan Wade though. Maybe it was the expectations we had impressed upon her simply because she came up playing acoustic songs, was swimming in tattoos, and was from Appalachia. Now as a major label artist and a large concert draw, Wade is becoming that female headliner we were looking for, even if it’s not exclusively in the independent country world.

Ahead of her new album Psychopath coming out on August 25th, you were sort of preparing yourself for her to go full-blown pop. After all, Wade has been talking a lot about the importance of her pop influences to the press. And with the way she moves and presents herself on stage, you felt like if her new music had any roots at all, it would be a victory. Then Wade said ahead of the ‘Psychopath’ song and album announcement,

“Regardless of what people say about ‘Psychopath,’ I’m proud because I feel like it showcases where I’m at with my sophomore album. I have no choice but to be authentic. And I have to feel what I feel. And right now, I’m really feeling the music.”

…almost like she was setting us up for a dramatic sea change.

But the song “Psychopath” feels right in line with the sound that Morgan Wade and producer Sadler Vaden have crafted for her, and that has earned her a loyal fan base, including with elements of independent country. Though the title might sounds a bit raw and intimidating, the song is actually a grateful love story. Some moog-like pulsations drift into the mix giving it some pop flavor, but this is still the rootsy singer/songwriter approach Wade is known for.

You continue to see Wade on the lineups of a lot of independent country festivals around the US, even after signing with a major label. She still feels like a part of the groundswell of artists reshaping the country music narrative, even if she doesn’t fit snugly in that crowd. Like American Aquarium and other more country rock outfits, it’s not a perfect fit. But if it’s good music, it belongs somewhere.

Psychopath is now available for pre-order.

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