Our favorite release of the week is Sam Smith‘s In the Lonely Hour. Sam Smith has gained attention from his work with Disclosure‘s “Latch” and Naughty Boy‘s “La La La”. In fact Sam Smith was not signed until after his work with Disclosure blew up like it did.
Sam Smith’s album is an album full of poppy ballads, with love and unrequited love as the main themes. The sincerity of the love themes is sometimes a little questionable, but that subjective.
Songs that particularly stand out are “Money on My Mind” and “Stay With Me”. “Money on My Mind” is a very pop oriented track that promotes the message that money is not everything and that the art of music should take precedent. For “Stay With Me” we are introduced to gospel chorus and R&B vibe.
Shout out musicomh.com
The United States music scene is very internalized. Rarely do we immediately appreciate an artist or music group when they are originally from a country that is seemingly foreign to the majority of Americans. Nico & Vinz are one of these groups.
Nico & Vinz (formerly known as Envy) are Norwegian hip-hop/pop artist. One of their biggest hits to date is “Am I Wrong”, which was released last summer. Though the song has just became available on the US iTunes, its very disturbing to find out this song is not new after hearing it on the radio for the first time this past week. The song has even been performed for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize Contest.
“Am I Wrong” is an anthem for promoting individual thought (which is why it was probably selected to perform for the Nobel Peace Prize Contest).
Am I wrong for thinking out the box from where I stay?
Am I wrong for saying that I choose another way?
Walk your walk and don’t look back, always do what you decide
Don’t let them control your life, that’s just how I feel
Vinz sings the first verse as well as the chorus on this track while Nico sings the second verse and bridge. There are obvious signs of their musical influences within the song such as African drums, Norwegian pop and American hip-hop.
Many other foreign-to-the-US artists had slow break outs, like Disclosure whose popular hit “Latch” which was released in 2012, did not gain any traction in the US market until late 2013 and now.
Music and art should flow more freely through all avenues we have. Copyright laws are important, but the United States needs to be more collaborative with other countries, otherwise Americans will continually be behind the curve when it comes to discovering new music.
Thanks a bunch USA Today and Bustle