Demi Lovato a little too confident on new album
It all started so promising in spring when Demi Lovato released her new single ‘Cool For The Summer’. With a whole new sexier image she catapulted herself into the charts and the music was quite refreshing and edgy as well. Pop with a thick production and a perfect chorus that brightened up many summer parties all around the world. A perfect start of a new album campaign one would say, but she couldn’t quite keep it up. Next single ‘Confident’ tried to be just as ballsy and bold, but sounded quite dated and out of touch with the contemporary charts. When you realize this is actually one of the better songs of the album with the same title, you know things ain’t looking good.
‘Cool For The Summer’ is by far the best and most interesting song on this record. This does not mean that every other track is horribly bad, but they all miss something or go wrong somewhere along the way. Take for example her collaboration with Iggy Azalea, ‘Kingdome Come’. It is actually quite decently produced, but at the same time a simple rehash of Iggy and Rita Ora’s ‘Black Widow’ and Katy Perry’s ‘Dark Horse’ and therefore completely faceless and superfluous. The same goes for ‘Waitin’ For You’, another rent-a-rapper song (with Sirah) adding nothing to this album as a body of work, let alone the music industry of today.
Most of the album however, consists of ballads and not the subtle and restrained kind of thing, but the big belting ones. On ‘Stone Cold’, she worked with Swedish singer-songwriter Laleh Pourkarim and although the track is actually quite beautiful in melody and lyrics, she completely oversings it with way too many larger than life ad libs which only take away from the meaning behind it. She worked with Laleh on the track ‘Father’ as well and the honest lyrics about the troublesome relationship she had with her dad who passed away in 2013 are impressive and moving, but again the fragile character of the message is killed by a bombastic finale and Jessie J like belting out. As if she still has to prove she can actually sing.
Sadly, the moments on which Demi gets it right on this record are quite rare. ‘Old Ways’ is a decent uptempo song that brings the ‘Confident’ attitude back again and she is able to pull this kind of track off. ‘For You’ and ‘Lionheart’ are slow songs with raw and loud vocals as well, but might be the most convincing as the melody and production on these tracks actually seem to keep up with her belting. Demi is able to write great pop tracks as she has proved in the past every once in a while, but on Confident it feels like style over substance, both in terms of her voice and the more edgy attitude. The album simply could have done with less acrobatic vocals and more memorable songs.
Must listen: Cool For The Summer, For You, Confident, Lionheart