Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews: Week of May 20, 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 third and final Jake’s Take’s New Music Reviews of May 2022! We got a lot of new music to unpack, so let’s get this party started!

The Chainsmokers’ So Far So Good is their best album in years! (Album cover property of Disruptor & Columbia Records)

So Far So Good by The Chainsmokers 

The Chainsmokers and Jake’s Take have had a love-hate relationship. When the duo Alex Pall and Drew Taggert released their last two albums: 2018’s Sick Boy and 2019’s World War Joy, I was appalled that the pair forcibly spoon-fed their fans unnecessary collaborations. The Chainsmokers went back to the drawing board for So Far So Good. There were no featured guest artists on the record, which allowed fans to get reacquainted with the duo. I loved this decision as it allowed them to showcase their artistry on a grander scale. The Chainsmokers co-produced and co-wrote most of the album with assistance from producers Ian Kirkpatrick, Whethan, and Dark Waves. Kirkpatrick, Chris Martin, and frequent collaborator Emily Warren were some of the songwriters who assisted the duo with the songwriting. So Far So Good is a vastly improved album from their previous efforts. Well done, gentlemen! B+ 

Tracks to Download: “Riptide,” “High,” “I Love U,”  & “If You’re Serious.”

Florence + The Machine’s Dance Fever features tunes written by Florence Welch, Dave Bayley, Thomas Bartlett, and the one and only Jack Antonoff. (Album cover property of Polydor Records)

Dance Fever by Florence + The Machine

Florence + The Machine dropped their fifth studio album: Dance Fever. Frontwoman Florence Welch teamed up with Glass Animals lead vocalist Dave Bayley, Thomas Bartlett, and Jack Antonoff to co-write and co-produce Dance Fever. From the first track, the Welch and Antonoff-produced “King,” fans could tell that this record would be something different. The only significant concern that I had was the song selections. Songs such as “Back in Town,” “Girls Against God,” and “Restraint” did not belong on this record. Despite this minor problem,  Dance Fever is a well-produced album. B-

Tracks to Download: “King,” “Free,” “My Love,” & “Morning Elvis.”

Kendrick Lamar’s Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers showcases why he is his generation’s King of Hip-Hop. (Album cover property of Aftermath & Interscope Records)

Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers by Kendrick Lamar

14-time Grammy-winning rapper Kendrick Lamar released his most ambitious piece of music yet: a double album called Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers. The rapper brought an all-star group of collaborators to craft and produce 18 songs. DJ Dahi, Sounwave, and J.LBS played a vital role in producing the songs. At the same time, a diverse group of featured artists such as Amanda Reifer, Beth Gibbons, Ghostface Killah, Kodak Black, and Summer Walker sprinkle cameos throughout the double album. A lot of people had high expectations for the “HUMBLE.” Rapper after his blockbuster 2017 DAMN. Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers continues to elevate hip-hop and set expectations for future MCs to release music. I firmly believe that Kendrick Lamar will play a significant role in this year’s music awards season. 

Tracks to Download: “N95,” “Die Hard,” “Father Time,” “Purple Hearts,” “Silent Hill,” & “Count Me Out.”

“Don’t Love Me” by Ne-Yo

R&B superstar Ne-Yo dropped his latest single: “Don’t Love Me.” The way that the “Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself)” singer started the song in his signature falsetto would excite fans’ ears. I am happily waiting on Ne-Yo’s new studio album. 

“Me Myself & I” by 5 Seconds of Summer 

Australian pop-rock band 5 Seconds of Summer is celebrating its eleventh anniversary this year! The quartet (Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Calum Hood, and Michael Clifford) dropped their third single off their fifth studio album, 5SOS5, “Me Myself & I.”The guys co-wrote the track with Mick Coogan, Jon Bellion, Jason Evigan, and Pete Nappi, while the latter three co-produced the song. Immediately, “Me Myself & I” sounds a thousand times better than any track on their 2020 album: Calm. I genuinely believe that they are heading back to their classic sound and that “Me Myself & I” could be an early candidate for 2022’s “Song of the Summer.” A- 

“Hope” by Voices of Service

Jake’s Take friends and America’s Got Talent finalists Voices of Service dropped their latest single: “Hope.” The quartet, retired U.S. Military veterans Ron Henry, Christal Rheams, Jason Hanna, and Caleb Green, teamed up with producer David “DQ” Quinones to create a song to support PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere). “Hope” gave me chills, and the single is the perfect pick-me-up for anyone that needs inspiration. Bravo, Voices of Service! A+ 

Head over to the second page for the latest edition of Jake’s Take’s Artists to Watch!

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Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar