Singles Released January 11-17

Something that I am going to start doing is every Thursday I will post my reviews of singles that came out this week in one post. Of course, there is no way I would be able to cover all of them so I will only do ones that made the top 200 itunes chart.

First up it’s Dancing with a Stranger by Sam Smith and Normani- Let me start off by saying that I enjoy Sam Smith and Normani as individuals. While I am not that familiar with Normani’s music or Fifth Harmony’s, I like her as a person. The instrumentals are dancy and fun, but nothing new. Sam and Normani both sound great, but there is no chemistry there. From what I have read the two are friends, but I wouldn’t be able to tell by listening to this. The song seems a bit fast for the two of them and some of the auto-tune on Normani’s vocals offset how good her voice actually is. The lyrics are okay. It isn’t something that I am going to want to come back.

Lost in the Fire by Gesaffelstein & The Weeknd- At first I didn’t think I would have much to talk about here. I still don’t, but I have more than I thought. Let me start off with the things that didn’t bother me so much. The beat is decent, I don’t know what it is but it’s clear that Gesaffelstein understand The Weeknd’s vibe. His voice sounds okay, not great but it’s fine. My problem is something that I saw briefly on Twitter but didn’t understand until now. There is already a problem with artists talking about how being gay is a phase. Plenty of female singers have made music dedicated to their flings with women but they always go back to men. First off, it’s clear that Abel is singing about Bella and for him to put her business out there is messed up. (unless she has talked about it before, but to my knowledge she hasn’t) And for him to trivialize her sexuality is awful. NOPE

Land of the Free by The Killers- For this even though I completely agree with the message of this song politically, I am going to try to put that aside. Brandon sounds really good in this song, his voice with the choir in the background is cool. I feel as though there could have been more done instrumentally. The guitar and drums are not too present and I wanted more of a punch for such a political song. Generally, in political songs I like for their to be some nuance to it. Flowers is blatantly stating what our issues are and letting them sit. Part of me wanted it to be more subtle and meaningful, but the other part of me realizes that sometimes people need to be told straight what our issues are.

Timebomb by WALK THE MOON- I must say that I have mixed feeling about a few of their past songs. I’ve only heard the ones that became really popular like Shut Up and Dance, One Foot, and Kamikaze. While I liked all three, Shut Up and Dance became overplayed and annoyed me. This song is probably my least favorite that I have heard from the group. The sound mixing gets warped at parts which I did not enjoy, the lyrics are basic love song tropes, and it wasn’t catchy. WALK THE MOON normally does a great job at creating catchy chorus’ that are almost impossible to get out of your head. With this song I didn’t feel that way. I guess I’ll have to see in a few days whether or not I can even remember the chorus much less having it on internal repeat.

Giant by Calvin Harris and Rag’n’Bone Man- So I love Rag’n’Bone Man’s voice. I think he has one of the best current male voices in the mainstream. (I know he isn’t that mainstream but bear with me) I was surprised to see him do a song with Calvin Harris because I thought he was better than that. (Nothing against Harris but you understand) This song proved my point because his voice was better than the beat could have been. The brass portion of the song was strange and felt unnecessary. The lyrics got old really quick with the repetitive “I am’s” getting on my nerves. I did find it funny that Harris got Rag’n’Bone Man to sing about giants because I mean, the guy is actually a giant. The song doesn’t know what it is. It starts off like electronic dance music, turns to Jazz instrumentals, and ends with gospel. Rag’n’Bone Man is better than this.

Hurt by Witt Lowry (feat. Deion Reverie)- The monster demon voice that is typical in pop/rap music does the entire intro. Gah! Why is this a thing? Anyways, the first verse lyrically is okay. It’s about a guy who can’t stop thinking about this girl who cheated on him. I was with it until the line, “What you meant to me is what I mean to art.” Most of these types of songs about a girl cheating always involve the guy thinking that he is God’s gift to women and the world as a whole. I do like Deion Reverie’s passion though. I can feel through his flow that he is on the verge of tears and I really appreciate that because it makes the content feel more real. The chorus vocals really are not great though. If he sticks to rapping then I think that I could enjoy him. His flows are great and he seems to know what he’s doing.

Big Plans by Why Don’t We- I am not all that familiar with this group other than just hearing their name and wondering why they thought that was a good name for a group. I also recognize Daniel from American Idol, but I haven’t heard their music. For this song the groove is nice. It sounds really familiar, which means people are going to like it. The lyrics caught me off guard because these boys are extremely young and singing about making a life with a girl. I shouldn’t be all that surprised because Lil Pump just turned 18 and look at his lyrics. The vocals are actually quite good. It isn’t a song that I’m going to remember tomorrow but it is in no means a bad song.And that’s it for my review of some of this week’s new singles. Overall, it wasn’t terrible. I’m not going to remember most of these songs, but at least they aren’t bad enough to stick in my mind for the wrong reasons. My favorite would have to be Land of the Free by The Killers and my least favorite is Lost in the Fire by Gesaffelstein & The Weeknd. Hopefully, next week produces better music.

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