JT’s New Music Reviews: Week of July 15, 2022

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Welcome to the latest edition of “Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews” for 2022. (Bitmoji property of Jake’s Take)

By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com

Welcome to the latest edition of Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews! We got a lot of music to unpack, so let’s get this party started.

Journey’s Freedom was an above average album. (Album cover property of BMG Rights Management)

Freedom by Journey 

The legendary rock group dropped their first studio album in 11 years: Freedom. This album featured lead vocalist Arnel Pineda, guitarist Neal Schon, keyboardist Jonathan Cain, drummer Deen Castronovo, and backing vocalist Jason Derlatka. The album also featured former members – American Idol legend Randy Jackson (bassist) and music legend Narada Michael Walden (drums), who both left the group in 2021. Walden worked with founding members Cain and Schon on Freedom’s producing and songwriting aspects. There are several standout tracks, such as “Don’t Give Up on Us,” “You Got the Best of Me,” and “The Way We Used to Be.” Unfortunately, there are filler songs that should have been used for a B-side. C+ 

Tracks to Download/Stream: “Don’t Give Up on Us,” “You Got the Best of Me,” “The Way We Used to Be,” & “United We Stand.”

Lizzo’s Special is a superb album that will empower its listeners. (Album cover property of Nice Life Recording Company and Atlantic Records)

Special by Lizzo

R&B superstar Lizzo dropped her first album in four years: Special. A heavy-hitter group of producers such as Jon Bellion, Benny Blanco, Max Martin, Mark Ronson, Mike Dean, and Pop Wansel crafted the music. Lizzo and R.City member Theron Thomas almost ALL the album’s 12 songs. This songwriting team could be the R&B music world’s equivalent of Taylor Swift and Aaron Dessner for the millennial generation. Special is a powerful album that will empower its listeners while making them dance (at times) simultaneously. I feel Special will play a significant role at the music awards this year as Lizzo and company could be accepting dozens of awards as the album is one of 2022’s best pop records! 

Tracks to Download/Stream: “About Damn Time,” “2 Be Loved (Am I Ready),” “Break Up Twice,” “Everybody’s Gay” & “Birthday Girl.”

“Got Me Good” by DNCE

Pop rock trio DNCE (Joe Jonas, JinJoo Lee, and Jack Lawless) dropped their second solo single of the year. “Got Me Good” showcases their band’s efforts to mix their iconic “Cake by the Ocean” pop-rock sound with heavy metal guitars. While it took me a while to warm up to the song, “Got Me Good” has the potential to dominate the Top 40 charts for the rest of the summer. B- 

“Irrelevant” by P!nk 

Billboard reported that P!nk clapped back at her haters through song. “Irrelevant” addresses criticism as conservative fans turned against the “Walk Me Home” entertainer when she revealed her disgust with the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade. This protest song is one of P!nk’s best tunes and will be an anthem for protesters and human rights campaigns for ages to come! Rock on, P!nk! A+  

Before we get to this edition of Jake’s Take’s Artists to Watch, we are fortunate to exclusively premiere Kristy Chmura’s new music video for one of my favorite songs of 2022: “Leigh.” Here is what Kristy said about “Leigh’s” filming process: 

The music video was shot in New Jersey under power lines in the Summer when things were still partially in lockdown. I was inspired by the industrial vibe of the construction site and the colors on the wood pile. It had such a lonely feeling that it made me think it would be cool to shoot the video for “Leigh” at that location.

The shoot was a one-camera shoot, with Damien Musto as the cameraman. I had shots in mind that I wanted to get, so we made it happen as just the two of us on a 100-degree day. Then Rob Fitzgerald and I worked on editing everything together to tell the story, and the music video for “Leigh” was born.

Artists to Watch:

Jake’s Take’s Artists to Watch is back! Here are some of the recording artists that have the potential to shake up the music industry.

“Leavin’ You” by Garrett Gregory 

Alberta, Canada-based country artist Garrett Gregory dropped “Leavin’ You.” The impeccable country rock guitar-heavy production thoroughly enthralled me. Garrett Gregory’s lyrics are superb, and I look forward to hearing new music from him. B/B+ 

“Good with Goodbye” by John Morgan

John Morgan was one of the American Song Contest’s breakout stars. His latest single, “Good with Goodbye,” is an impressive country-rock anthem about a broken relationship. The song has shades of 1980s classic “Careless Whisper,” but I think John has another potential radio and streaming hit on his hands. A- 

“Exquisite” by Mindflip 

Quebecois hip-hop recording Mindflip rounds out this edition of Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews. I truly enjoyed listening to “Exquisite” from start to finish. Fans will love the combination of rap and EDM, and he could give Calvin Harris, Disclosure, and DJ Khalid a run for their money. B+ 

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Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar