Time To Go Cuckoo! A Preview of Adam Lambert’s ‘Trespassing’ Album
Actually, scratch that. It's going to be great.
My first impression of the four songs, besides their obvious awesomeness, is how cohesively they hang together, even as they flip between the light and dark, the hard and soft, the upbeat and the downtempo. For Your Entertainment was an almost schizophrenic genre-hopper, with songs penned by everyone from rockers like Muse's Matt Bellamy, Weezer's Rivers Cuomo, and the Darkness's Justin Hawkins, to pop songsmiths-for-hire like Max Martin, Ryan Tedder, and Linda Perry, to even actual pop stars like Lady Gaga and Pink--a hodgepodge that I thoroughly enjoyed, as FYE sort of sounded to me like the raddest K-TEL compilation ever, but something that drew ire from critics who thought the album seemed too unfocused. Well, those critics will shut up soon enough, as it seems like on Trespassing, Adam has truly found his voice. Gone is any semblance of throwback classic-rock posturing, which may disappoint early fans of his "Idol" performances of Zeppelin, the Stones, Aerosmith, Steppenwolf, et al; however, the hypermodern, glossy-but-not-too-glossy sound of Trespassing really fits Adam like a custom-made Skingraft leather jacket. This is big, shiny pop, but it's pop with an edge. Remember how Adam once described himself as "edgy, with a smile"? Yeah, it's like that.
The other major impression I have--and it's an impression that I predict will be shared by many--is how very different the other Trespassing tracks sound from the disc's already released first single, "Better Than I Know Myself." That song is a VH1-friendly power ballad along the lines of "Whataya Want From Me"--and of course, since "WWFM" was FYE's biggest (and Grammy-nominated) hit, it makes sense that something similar in vibe would be Trespassing's lead single, a reintroduction of Adam to the American mainstream. (I assume most of you reading this are already intimately familiar with "Better Than I Know Myself"; if not, go educate yourself and read my review/listen to the track HERE, and see Adam perform it for the first time on television HERE.) However, listeners who assume that "BTIKM" is representative of Trespassing won't know what hit 'em once they hear bangin' floor-fillers like the Hi-NRG disco workout "Cuckoo" and the utterly badass title track, or darker and deeper electroballads like "Broken English" and "Underneath." To borrow a line from "Trespassing," wait till ya get a load of this.