Monday, December 28, 2020

Album Reviews: Astrid S and Cam

Leave It Beautiful:  At 24 this is Astrid S's debut album.  She's been in the spotlight since she placed in 5th in the Norwegian version of Pop Idol in 2013.  According to my 24 year old theory this is likely the best album she'll ever make and it is a pretty solid album.  There are no bad songs, it's good and short at 10 tracks and it's a fun listen.  I found myself putting it on over and over.  Perfect album if you are in your 20's and single.  It's all about being in your 20's and single.  Lots of lyrics about love and drinking.  

I'm reminded of something I heard a music critic say a few years ago about Robyn.  He was talking about how she writes these reflective and sometimes dark songs with a great dance tune as the back drop.  So unless you are really paying attention to the lyrics you won't notice that the song isn't really upbeat.  This album makes me think of that.  The song in the video above is a great example of this.  If you listen to the lyrics it's a pretty dark song, but it's so catchy you can miss it if you aren't paying attention.

The Otherside:  While Leave It Beautiful is all about being in your 20's, The Otherside is all about growing past that experience and starting the see the world and your own life experiences from a different perspective.  Cam is now 36 and a recent mother, and this album does a great job of reflecting where she is in her life experience.  

Here is a line from her song "Changes" that does a good job of expressing some of the sentiment of this album. 
Somewhere out in the big wild country Someone's fallin' in love in a backseat Givin' it away Like their hearts won't ever break God bless the young hearts sippin' cheap wine Gettin' drunk with their friends for the first time Thinkin' nothing's gonna change Till everything changes

It's funny because this seems a perfect complimentary album to the one from Astrid S.  

If you don't know Cam I would best describe her music as Americana.  At times she makes me think of Lone Justice.  She's more country than they were, but there is a certain vibe in her vocal performance and in her lyrics that reminds me of them.  This is a good album and nice and tight at 11 songs.  Every song on here is strong and well written.  I discovered Cam a few years ago when my daughter started listening to her last album based on one of her friend's recommendation.  It's cool that my daughter can now influence what I'm listening to.   

This album is a definite clean the house album as I've done just that with it.  The opening song "Redwood Tree" is about as well written song as you'll hear and reflects that she got her start in Nashville as a songwriter.  

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