Adam Lambert’s new album is ‘The Original High.’ Music critics have weighed in on the Grammy-nominated American Idol alum’s new album with mixed reviews, noting his musical evolution and maturing artistic vision. Check out a roundup of what they have to say.
Much has happened since American Idol in 2009 that saw Adam Lambert’s rise to fame after years of obscurity as yet another music artist with a big voice suitable for music theater who was vying for his chance to enter the public consciousness. And he has done just that since becoming the runner up that season which seems so long ago. Shortly after the season was over he had his formal coming out as gay on the cover of Rolling Stone and much was made of it at the time. Not to many years later, in 2012, his sophomore album ‘Trespassing’ topped the Billboard 200 and he became the first openly gay artist to do so.
Now there’s been a gap between that groundbreaking album and this one, ‘The Original High.’ Adam Lambert left his previous record label, RCA, over the sadly too-common reason of artistic differences. Now, in his first album with Warner Bros. he has teamed up once again with hitmaker Swedish production and songwriting team Max Martin and Shellback, who were responsible for his 2009 hit ‘Whataya Want from Me ‘ which reached No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Critics have certainly taken note of his stylistic changes; no longer relying on the sheer vocal prowess; this is a more nuanced and subtle album. As Lambert has himself said in interviews, the songs are more deeply personal this time around. He’s even revealed that the single ‘Ghost Town’ has some references to the toll that being a closeted in Hollywood can take on a person.
A triumphant comeback or not? Critics are divided in their opinions. Here’s a roundup.
“….Sure, Lambert could have capitalized on Daft Punk’s funky success and slapped together his own album of random access memories. But, no. Instead, he has already evolved and moved on, with a new record label (Warner Bros.) and a new hypermodern sound for his sleek, sophisticated new dance-pop offering, The Original High. And true to its title, it’s his most original work yet…..” — Yahoo Music
“….Now, almost exactly three years since the release of Trespassing, Adam has risen from the ashes of his previous label, and with The Original High has given us another well crafted pop album…..” — The Backlot
“… The only time Lambert’s personality is not muffled by slick production is on the funky, fun Evil in the Night. Otherwise, this unfortunately titled record is neither original nor uplifting enough to generate a high of any description…..” — Irish Times
“…On this third studio album, he’s ditched his former label’s plans for a collection of 1980s cover songs in favour of a bouncy journey through a few of the current pop-house revival’s most predictable motifs. …..” — The Guardian
“….It’s not that Lambert eliminates the big notes entirely, he just uses them more sparingly and to better effect. They become the crowning glory of the lovely ballad “There I Said It,” the calling card of the funk-guitar-driven “Evil in the Night.”….” — Newsday
Yes, critics have had their say, and now it’s left, as always, to the fans, to Adam Lambert’s Glamberts. Will they embrace the maturing artistry that is more than a few steps away from the nail polish and eye shadow and impossibly high notes? Meanwhile we can watch the much-discussed and moody ‘Ghost Town’ music video (below) as we await the arrival of Adam Lambert’s ‘The Original High.’
Pictures: PR Photos