While we are all anticipating the third album, of the singer and songwriter James Morrison (26), who is born and raised in the UK, I thought I’d hit the button play on my stereo again and listen to his debut “undiscovered”. He debuted with this album just 5 years ago and received immediate good criticism for his songs as “Wonderful World” and “You Give Me Something”. On his second album, he had his biggest success with the hit single “Broken Strings” that featured Nelly Furtado.
“Under The Influence” is the first track and hits the album off, on a quite smashing way. The track feels like it’s live, and kicking. It’s got a good combination of his soulful voice and instruments such as piano, guitars and some violins.
“You Give Me Something”, the first single introduces us with his beautiful and famous voice, and his romantic way of writing. It’s a love song, and one that he only can do. It’s really what you feel when you’ve recently fallen in love. Great track. No surprise because choosing the right debut single is crucial.
The next track, and single, “Wonderful World” is my favourite. The video, features a girl in an institution (that looks like rehab for models) going crazy in her room while her roommates quietly get their suntan at the pool. At the end of the song, the pool goes black. You’ve all seen it. The passion of the music video describes the passion in the song, and the way James sings it.
I know that it’s a wonderful world, but I can’t feel it right now, I can only see it when you’re here, here with me
The passion is also shared in “The Pieces Don’t Fit Anymore”. It’s the first ballad, that starts slowly but builds up near the end. The moaning “Hmmmhm” adds to the sadness of the song. Boy, can he be sad.
“One Last Chance” sounds promising at first but is a bit of a let down, actually. All though the bass guitar works great in the track, there isn’t a lot going on in it. It’s not really slow, however it’s not cheering me up either.
“Undiscovered”, also a single, is a bit more happy and cheerful. It actually sounds a bit gospel to me. Just a sad gospel, but can’t you hear it too? It’s like a song that gives hope to the hopeless. Like saying you’re not broke, but just currently without money. And obviously, the money issue, which isn’t really an issue, just a minor problem, will be solved soon with help of this song. Yea, that’s how it feels.
“The Letter” feels like he’s just having a relaxing day, but if you’re listening to the lyrics he’s actually having a really fucked up one. Pardon the language. This song reminds me of that scene in Desperate Housewives where Susan can’t open the letter Mike wrote where he explains everything. Personal anecdote much. Or maybe not, it’s probably really random. But still, good song.
The strange thing about “Call The Police” is that I expected a song that is totally out of control, something strong and hard. But until the chorus, not a lot of crazy comes out. However, from the chorus on the track is really heavy, and actually like he’s raging out. Probably the most violent track on the album.
“This Boy” is more of an accoustic track, and the guitar is pretty great in it. But after all that action from the previous track, which wasn’t that much, I want more and this one isn’t pleasing my needs. Until I’m about two minutes in, that’s where he actually starts. And when you think of it, it’s a great way to make a track. Slowly built it up, until the end is great. But, he does that a lot, though.
“If The Rain Must Fall” is very soulful, which fits him perfectly. I do think that it’s a bit chaotic, I don’t really when the chorus ends and the verse starts. But I may not know anything about soul so I’m leaving it to him to sing his song. The violin that comes back sometimes, is great. It always is.
“How Come” isn’t that much different from the previous track to me. But I hate complaining and he does sing it so well.
“The Last Goodbye” is the last track (how can it not be?). Out of all the sad songs on this album, this is the saddest. It’s sad, but it’s also cold. His words are ice. The intro is long, but necessary to make it good. After this you are guaranteed that you’ll feel depressed. Or if you’re already depressed… wait no, you’ll just feel more depressed. But depression isn’t always bad in music. In this case, it’s actually really good and well done.
Overall, I strongly believe that James Morrison has one of the best and strongest male voices in pop. That is one thing he’s got, another is his great writing skills and how he puts them in songs. He’s got a way to put sadness in lyrics, and then in tracks that are now his biggest hits. However, his album isn’t a total masterpiece for me. I personally think he’s chosen the right songs for singles and nailed it with them. But if you are looking for a good debut, here it goes. Hope the third one is as good.