The UK has had a long history of exporting some of their best musical talents across the shores. During the sixties The Beatles and Rolling Stones became some of the most influential music talents to rock the world and capture the hearts of millions across the globe. Music fans recently experienced a resurgence of the British invasion with more recent acts such as Amy Winehouse, Estelle and Joss Stone hitting our U.S. airwaves. We all cannot forget Adele who took the world stage in rare form. She shocked the world by winning more than six Grammys in one night in 2012; more than any artist has ever won in one night.
The UK’s newest edition to that soulful roster of exported talent is Sam Smith. Sam Smith is a soulful vocalist with a voice that commands attention. Sam Smith breakthrough hit Latch which he lent his vocals along with UK pop artist Disclosure put him on the map but is nothing in comparison to his debut album in which he displays true virtuosity. His debut album In The Lonely Hour Album is a testament to those soulful bellowing voices of yesteryear. Sam Smith In The Lonely Hour stays in character as an R&B artist without necessary pigeonholing himself as a crooner or as is often the case, a dance track masqueraded by an R&B artist. Smith draws you closer with each track, and stays true to form and lets his voice do most of the talking, by stripping the sound to its barest elements. Throughout listening In The Lonely Hour album it is all Smith voice playing as the central character, with Sam Smith forcing the listener to truly listen to the nuances in sound and pay attention. His debut takes the listener through a wonderful musical journey. Songs such as Stay with Me are raw, and its kind of reminiscent of John Legend’s ‘Ordinary People” drawing upon the connection between the listener and the artist. He takes the listener through a blues infused sound with the track “I’m not the only one” and singlehandedly redefines the breakup song. The track “Life Support” is a wonderful ambient track that brings the best of a Justin Timberlake-ish sound without all of the distractions.
Sam Smith is a fresh new entrance to the music industry and his debut submission is a true gem, in a genre that is often lacking new sound and inspiration. The UK continues to astound us with their soulful artists and Sam Smith’ In The Lonely Hour is a welcomed British invasion in my book. Buy his album it can only described as poignant well conceived musical journey, and he is certainly one of the top artists to watch in 2014.