"In The Lonely Hour" - Sam Smith [Official Full Album Stream + Zumic Review]

Kara Bertoncini

by Kara Bertoncini

Published June 9, 2014

Sam Smith fans don't have to wait another day to listen to his debut album. The British singer-songwriter has just released a 'first-listen' to his album In The Lonely Hour. Prepare yourself as Smith allows us into his broken heart and visits all the emotions that love creates.

In a recent interview with Fader, Smith opened up about how his experiences in love, and unrequited love, have shaped and inspired the nature of this album.

In the Lonely Hour is about a guy that I fell in love with last year, and he didn’t love me back. I think I'm over it now, but I was in a very dark place. I kept feeling lonely in the fact that I hadn't felt love before.

The 10-track album showcases the undeniable talent this 22-year-old artist has. He has one of the finest soul and R&B voices of our generation with a vocal ability like no other. Within one song, Smith demonstrates how easily he can transition from a resonant chest voice to a delicious falsetto that will leave you reeling.

What I’m trying to do actually with my album is show that it’s my voice that’s leading. It’s my voice that’s the instrument.

Truth be told, one of the reasons we sing is to enhance the text and Smith knows exactly how to captivate his listeners through powerful lyrics and heartfelt orchestrations. By collaborating with producers like Two Inch Punch, Eg White, Jimmy Napes, Steve Fitzmaurice, Mojam and Fraser T Smith, In The Lonely Hour has a balance across the pop, R&B, soul and gospel genres and is what makes it so unique.

Highlight tracks are "Money On My Mind," "Stay With Me," "Lay Me Down" and "Leave Your Lover," which has just released a music video and is sure to get a lot of radio spins. There are also plenty of new tracks to sink your ears into that will definitely pull at your heart strings.

The album opens strong with "Money On My Mind" confirming that Smith is not pursuing this career for the money, but for the love. And so begins his journey.

The beginnings of his unrequited love are described in "Good Thing" and followed by the iconic track "Stay With Me." This song brings tears to the surface as we learn that one-night stands take place to fill the voids he had. His voice is full of pain and on lyrics 'stay with me' you can feel his urgency to be accepted.

The album progresses with tracks "Leave Your Lover" and "I'm Not The Only One." Both of these songs detail the loss of love in a way that most can relate to and those who have been misled by it will connect with Smith's lyrics in "I'm Not The Only One."

"Like I Can" brings an upbeat sound to the album and a sense of healing. But it doesn't last for long. The moody beginning and production quality of "Life Support" takes us to that dark place most try to avoid. With a distinctly different sound to the rest of the album, the urban drums and use of digital production on his falsetto are sublime.

Approaching the end of the album, it seems that Smith is close to telling his love how he really feels in the song "Not In That Way." This stripped-back track of just guitar and voice reveals his fear in opening up his heart as he is afraid that what he predicts will come true.

"Lay Me Down" closes the album and leaves us with no happy ending, not that we expect it in an album inspired by unrequited love. The journey of sorrow and loss is simplified in this song and leaves us with the lasting image, "I don't want to be here if I can't be with you tonight."

You can support this fine young artist by purchasing In The Lonely Hour on Amazon (Vinyl, CD, MP3) and iTunes.

Head to Sam Smith's Zumic Artist Page to keep up to date with the latest in his music and tour dates.


Sam Smith
Gospel Pop
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