In spite of its ironic title, I Hate Cowboys & All Dogs Go to Hell, Chase Rice says his new album is "the most vulnerable [he's] ever been."
To get to the heart, the North Carolina native got back to basics.
"First and foremost, the way we recorded, it's different," he tells ABC Audio. "The way I wrote the songs ... all on acoustic guitars. There's no tracks on this record that I wrote to. ... It kinda feels like 2010 again for me."
Chase had a hand in writing all of the album's 13 songs, including penning three by himself. And just like he didn't write to prerecorded loops, he also decided to forego using "click tracks" — a common way to keep a song in perfect time.
"The speed of the song is based off of the human feel and however much slow or fast we felt like playing it that take," he explains. "And so that's the first thing I think people are gonna feel and hear."
"The way we recorded it was different, where we found the right keys, we got in there with a studio band in my house, which we've never done before," he points out. "The way I'm singing is different just because, like I said, we found the right keys for each song. I'm not screaming. I sang way too high on a lot of these songs in the past."
The album's cover is a photo of his late father, Daniel Rice.
Next up, Chase makes a Valentine's Day stop at the Grand Ole Opry before hitting the road on his Way Down Yonder Tour.