Craig Morgan is best known primarily for songs that celebrate small-town values like 'What I Love About Sunday,' but for his upcoming album, the singer has decided to throw his fans a curve ball.

Morgan's last project, 'This Ole Boy,' was his first under a new deal with Black River Entertainment, and he deliberately recorded an album that was heavy on the kind of songs his longtime fans expect, like 'More Trucks Than Cars.' But the album also contained a soaring, soulful ballad, 'Love Loves a Long Night,' that demonstrated a new side to Morgan's voice, and his recently-released single 'Wake Up Loving You' -- the advance first single from his next album -- offers more of the same.

"I think it was time for some change," Morgan tells Taste of Country. "I think it’s time for people to see more of me, musically." He says half of the upcoming release consists of greatest hits, while big ballads comprise the other half of the new material. He is excited about the new direction, and particularly about  'Wake Up Loving You,' which allows him to stretch into the upper part of his range.

"And I think it’s the biggest song of my career," Morgan predicts. "Everybody is looking for the songs, the music that will help elevate your career, your profile. I don’t think I’ve ever had a song that got a reaction and the attention that this song is getting instantly."

He adds, "That’s what I love about this song. it’s similar enough to the stuff I’ve done in the past and it’s not gonna scare anybody, but at the same time allows me to sing in ways that I’ve always wanted to."

No title or release date have been announced for Morgan's forthcoming album.