Moore a bit ‘hope’less on new album

Heather Rudow

After taking a long hiatus to star in films like “Saved!” and hang with Vincent Chase and his boys on “Entourage,” Mandy Moore returns to the music scene with “Wild Hope.”

Not only is this Moore’s latest recording of new music in six years, but it’s also her first foray into songwriting. She teamed up with artists such as Rachel Yamagata, Lori McKenna, indie-pop duo The Weepies, and the production team behind John Mayer, Dave Matthews and Liz Phair to create what they hoped to be Moore’s triumphant transition into the serious folk singer territory. What they got, however, was a mostly boring, incredibly mediocre, pop album with some folky undertones.

Moore’s been saying for years that she wants to be known as more than the pop tart whose song, “Candy,” made millions of pre-teen hearts skip a beat, and to her credit, she has. On “Wild Hope” she has come into her own vocally, and sounds stronger and more mature than ever before. While her lyrics try to sound edgy, introspective and bittersweet, they usually fall on the side of clich