Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews: Week of January 22, 2021

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Welcome to the latest edition of “Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews.” (Bitmoji property of Jake’s Take)

By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com

It’s the second Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews of 2021! We have a lot of music to unpack so let’s get this party started.

One Night in Miami soundtrack
Grammy-winning Jazz musician Terence Blanchard teamed up with Leslie Odom, Jr. to record the epic soundtrack for ‘One Night in Miami.’ (Album cover property of Hampton King Louisiana Productions)

One Night in Miami…(Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) by Terence Blanchard & Leslie Odom, Jr. 

There is award buzz surrounding Regina King’s first feature film, One Night in Miami… The film focused on a fictionalized meeting between Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Jim Brown, and Sam Cooke. Actor-singer Leslie Odom, Jr. (who plays Cooke in the film) and six-time Grammy-winning jazz composer Terence Blanchard worked on the Prime Video film’s soundtrack. The soundtrack showcases Terence Blanchard’s impeccable arrangements that transport listeners into the mid-1960s. The soundtrack also features L.C. Cooke (Sam Cooke’s younger brother) ‘s powerful cover of “Put Me Down Easy” and “Howl for Me Daddy,” Terrence Blanchard’s collaboration with Keb’ Mo’ and Tarriona’ Tank’ Ball. However, Leslie Odom, Jr.’s vocals are the highlight of the album. The Hamilton star brilliantly delivered superb vocal covers of classic 1950s and 1960s anthems. One Night in Mami is one superb soundtrack. B+/A- 

Tracks to Download: “I Believe To My Soul,” “Put Me Down Easy,” “Howl For Me Daddy,” “You Send Me,” & “Speak Now.”

ZAYN’s Nobody is Listening is an improvement on Icarus Falls thanks to hits such as “Better” & “Vibez.” (Album cover property of RCA Records)

Nobody is Listening by ZAYN 

In 2015, the pop world was shocked when Zayn Malik left the famous boyband known as One Direction to pursue a solo career. Six years later, the former X Factor UK alum is one of R&B’s top superstars. The “Pillowtalk” singer-songwriter released his third studio album: Nobody is Listening. I am grateful that ZAYN and his team decided not to release a double album and released an 11-track record. James Devlin, Khalid, Lucky Daye, Nija Charles, and Scribz Riley are among the songwriters who helped ZAYN and his team make this record. I believe that Nobody is Listening is far superior to Icarus Falls, and it is a record that could play very well in the 2021-22 awards season. B+ 

Tracks to Download: “Better,” “Vibez,” “When Love’s Around,” & “Sweat.”

“Endless” by Rence 

One of Jake’s Take’s favorite artists is back! Singer, songwriter, and producer Rence dropped his first single of 2021: “Endless.” The track is the perfect cumulation of past hits such as “Darkside” and “Strawberry Blonde.” “Endless” has Top 40 potential and should be immediately handed to programming directors on radio and streaming services. Bravo, Rence! A- 

Selena Gomez’s first Spanish-language track: “De Una Vez” could mark an intriguing chapter in her recording career. (Music video property of Interscope Records)

“De Una Vez” by Selena Gomez

For the first time in her career, Selena Gomez released a Spanish-language song. The “Look at Her Now” singer-songwriter collaborated with a songwriting and production team that included Tainy, Neon16, Albert Hyde, and Elena Rose. “De Una Vez” is a superb track and could lead to an intriguing chapter in the Hotel Transylvania franchise actress’ career.  B

Zara Larsson teamed up with Young Thug for an impeccable track: “Talk About Love.” (Music video property of Epic Records)

“Talk About Love” by Zara Larsson featuring Young Thug

Swedish singer Zara Larsson is one of her generation’s top artists. Thanks to hits such as “Wow” and the Clean Bandit collaboration: “Symphony,” Zara Larsson has amassed a social media following thanks to her exceptional vocals. This year, the “Bad Boys” singer-songwriter is expected to release her third studio album: Poster Girl. Recently, Epic Records dropped the album’s fourth single: “Talk About Love,” which features rapper Young Thug. Produced by rising superstar producer Mike Sabath and co-written by Young Thug, Amy Allen, and Dewain Whitmore, “Talk About Love” is a superb track from start to finish. I predict that “Talk About Love” could receive lots of love from Top 40 radio and streaming services. A- 

Head to page two to check out this edition’s Artists to Watch!

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Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar