Nearly 20 years have passed since Mandy Moore initially touched down into the public consciousness with her debut album So Real in 1999. Since that time, Moore’s rise as a critically acclaimed actress has run in tandem with her bold musical reinvention from a pre-fab teen sensation to a sophisticated pop vocalist and scribe.
Unveiled today, her breezy new single “When I Wasn’t Watching” and its accompanying video are just appetizers from her as-yet-to-be titled seventh studio album due at the top of 2020 on the Verve Forecast imprint. Moore’s first return to music since the release of her sixth record, the lauded Amanda Leigh (2009), the gorgeous composition picks up right where Moore left off with Amanda Leigh as she reunites with its principal producer, Mike Viola. The song is an accomplished guitar-pop piece centered on an effortless combination of groove, melody and Moore’s evocative vocal shading.
“I think everyone’s had the experience of feeling lost and not quite understanding how you’ve found yourself at a certain point in your life,” Moore explains in an official statement. “And I think the key is not to judge yourself for that. I’m a big believer in the idea that what you’ve journeyed through is ultimately going to factor into the person you become, and how you’ll greet whatever big challenge you face next.”
The single arrives one week prior to Moore returning to her role as Rebecca Pearson in the fourth season of the beloved NBC television drama This Is Us, which premiers Tuesday, September 24.
Welcome back Ms. Moore, we’ve missed you.